Table 2

Strategies, experiences and limitations of each country’s response

Pandemic responsesAustraliaSouth AfricaEgyptNigeria
StrategyNational COVID-19 Primary Care Response; rapid introduction of telehealth; targeting of high-risk priority populationsStrong political leadershipQuarantine hospitals assigned in in every governateNational leadership with regular communications about government actions and rationale
ExperiencesGP “fever” clinics and vaccination; large, centralised hubs and in-reach programmes to hard-to-reach communitiesGood communication; separate PC streams for those with and without COVID-19-related symptomsWorld Bank funding assisted implementation of Universal Health Insurance Law providing more equitable access to healthcarePC and PH worked together to conduct health education on testing and vaccination
LimitationsCould have been earlier access to PPE and initial vaccine supplyInsufficient community engagement to coordinate care; poor laboratory services; focus on major hospitals and ICU bedsInadequate PPE and other resource supply; integration between PH and PC, testing capacity and vaccine roll-out could be improvedPoor remuneration and resourcing of PC workforce; professional ‘brain drain’ to other countries; suboptimal border control and surveillance measures; slow diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19 cases; poor vaccination roll-out
  • GP, general practitioner; ICU, intensive care unit; PC, primary care; PH, public health; PPE, personal protective equipment.