Impact of COVID-19 on Rwanda’s Health Sector

On 30 January 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the new coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) with a strong recommendation for countries to take appropriate measures to interrupt virus spread. By 11 March 2020, the WHO had declared COVID-19 as a global pandemic with the number of cases estimated at 118,319, and the virus had expanded to 114 countries with ripple effects on every aspect of human life. The COVID-19 burden has resulted in unprecedented pressure on the public health systems across the world, including many African countries. Rwanda is the focus of the current report, as a country which stemmed the spread of COVID-19 with early and decisive measures. This report seeks to document the interventions put in place to flatten the curve of COVID-19 transmission, examine the impact of COVID-19 on health outcomes in Rwanda, and describe interventions to mitigate the socioeconomic impact.