I am pleased to present to you the fourth issue of the Rwanda Public Health Bulletin (RPHB) second
Although there is an increasing global trend in COVID-19 numbers, this issue comes in a period when a
few of COVID-19 vaccines is approved and being administered worldwide. While countries are racing
to secure the purchase of enough vaccines, countries are still encouraged to continue and reinforce all
protective measures. However, the current rapid spread of SARS-CoV-2 new variants has put the world
on alert and triggered new restriction measures. The upsurge of COVID-19 cases and deaths that Rwanda
is facing since November 2020 raise a concern about the current capacity of containing the spread of
COVID-19. Three global variants of interest D614G, N501Y and E484K mutations which occur in the
spike (S) protein identified in the UK, in South Africa, and Brazil respectively, have called to attention to
improve the laboratory diagnostic capacity in place. These mutations in the SARS-CoV-2 spike (S) protein
raise a concern about the potential impact on viral infectivity and immune escape.
To reinforce our knowledge on COVID-19, the content in this issue will provide you with information
on the global trend of COVID-19 vaccine, challenges of new emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants, the body
immune response against COVID-19 in Africa. Although the national health system is currently challenged
by the pandemic crisis, the Rwanda Public Heath Bulletin did not want to oversee the need of scientific
content on other health topics; hence in this issue, will also have topics on the the utilization of modern
contraceptives in refugee camps and antibiotics prescription practices in health centers, as the primary care
level of the Rwandan health system.
I hope you will enjoy reading RPHB Vol. 2 Issue 4. We are expecting that you consider sharing your
scientific content on RPHB content in return.
Prof. Leon Mutesa, MD, PhD