The coronavirus disease COVID-19 continues to spread at the regional and global levels. As of 12 November 2022, the global cumulative incidence reached 632 185 107 reported cases and 6 606 497 associated deaths at a case-fatality ratio (CFR) of 1.05%. Meanwhile, the 22 countries of the Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR) have reported a total of 23 175 222 cases, representing about 3.67% of the global count, with 348 809 associated deaths (CFR 1.51%). Most countries in the Region are in the community transmission phase.
Since the beginning of the outbreak, the country that has reported the highest number of total cases in the Region is Islamic Republic of Iran (7 558 893; 32.62% of the Region’s total), followed by Iraq (2 462 272; 10.62%) and Jordan (1 746 997; 7.54%). Islamic Republic of Iran also reported the highest number of total COVID-19 associated deaths (144 610; CFR 1.91%), followed by Pakistan (30 629; CFR 1.95%) and Tunisia (29 266; CFR 2.55%). The highest CFRs were reported by Yemen (18.07%), followed by Sudan (7.83%) and Syria (5.51%), while the lowest CFRs were reported by United Arab Emirates (0.23%), Bahrain (0.22) and Qatar (0.14%).
During epidemiological week 45, the Region reported a decrease in cases by 11% when compared to the previous week (10 663 cases compared to 11 936 cases). A decrease by 8% was also observed for associated deaths (55 deaths in the current week compared to 61 deaths in the previous week).
The weekly number of cases have decreased in all countries of the Region except in 7 out of 22 countries as compared to the previous week. This week the number of COVID-19 associated deaths also decreased in all countries of the Region except in two out of 22 countries as compared to the previous week.*
In terms of testing, a total of 439 624 109 laboratory tests were conducted since the start of the outbreak across the Region including 780 611 tests in week 45, which shows a 37% decrease as compared to the previous week when 1 229 495 tests were conducted. The highest number of PCR tests were reported from United Arab Emirates (196 427 310), followed by Islamic Republic of Iran (54 457 134) and Saudi Arabia (44 716 361). The average positivity rate for the Region is 5.27%. WHO recommends a positivity rate of around 3% to 12% as a general benchmark indicating adequate testing, which was achieved in most countries of the Region?
Meanwhile, COVID-19 vaccination continues across the Region. The total number of doses administered so far in the 22 countries is 838 242 096. Pakistan has administered the highest number of doses at 314 087 995, followed by Islamic Republic of Iran at 154 693 602 and Egypt at 100 554 948. On the other hand, Bahrain (3 474 865), Yemen (1 149 321) and Djibouti (301 418) administrated the lowest number of COVID-19 doses in the Region. *
Supporting countries in the Region
The regional incident management support team continues to coordinate the response and provide technical support to countries and partners in the Region in the areas of coordination and partnership, surveillance, laboratory capacity, clinical management, infection prevention and control, risk communication and community engagement, points of entry according to the International Health Regulations (2005), research, health systems, and essential health services among others.
Source: World Health Organization