Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)
Polio this week as of 5 June 2018 [GPEI]
Summary of newly-reported viruses this week:
Pakistan: One new wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) case reported.
Afghanistan : One new WPV1-positive environmental sample.
“The world’s eyes are on us” – expert group makes recommendations for polio eradication in Afghanistan
Kabul, 4 June 2018 – The Technical Advisory Group for polio eradication (TAG) met 30–31 May to assess progress made towards eradicating polio in Afghanistan so far and to make recommendations for the way forward.
In his opening remarks, Dr Najibullah Mojadidi, Presidential Focal Point for Polio Eradication said, that “polio eradication is a national priority”.
He called on the armed groups to “respect the neutrality of the programme.”
Dr Richard Peeperkorn, WHO Representative in Afghanistan, commended the achievements made. “We are now at a critical juncture. Refusal and access issues continue to be a challenge. We need to tackle these issues in a different way”.
United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator Toby Lanzer said that “We count on the goodwill of all parties to the conflict.“ Despite difficulties, he encouraged the participants. “We must not be discouraged. It is a marathon, not a sprint. Keep moving towards the finishing line – together with Pakistan.”
Adele Khodr, UNICEF Representative in Afghanistan, stated that “It is a difficult time for the programme, and the world’s eyes are on us. However, we must not be discouraged. We must join forces and act as one.”…
WHO Grade 3 Emergencies [to 9 Jun 2018]
:: Amidst the devastation of war in Yemen, efforts are under way to control cholera
… The cholera epidemic began in Yemen in early October 2016, the almost inevitable result of ongoing armed conflict, devastated infrastructure, and a health system on the brink of collapse. Today, it is the largest cholera outbreak ever recorded. By the end of January 2018, the number of suspected cases had risen to over one million.
Controlling the outbreak
Measures are now being taken to mitigate further spread of the disease. As a part of a broader integrated response plan supported by the World Health Organization (WHO), UNICEF and the World Bank partnership, an oral cholera vaccination (OCV) campaign was launched on 6 May 2018 and was fully supported by the national health authorities in cooperation with WHO and UNICEF. It is the first time this has been done in Yemen.
Further OCV campaigns are planned for other priority areas across Yemen. Prevention and control measures are imperative to slow and ultimately contain the outbreak from spreading further.
The outbreak continues to threaten millions in Yemen
“As the third wave of cholera looms upon armed conflict-ridden Yemen, the uptake of this crucial public health tool is a vital and substantial prevention measure in the fight against this epidemic. In addition to conducting vaccination campaigns, an integrated comprehensive cholera outbreak response operational plan has been developed in cooperation with the health authorities and collaboration with health partners to implement activities regarding early detection, referral, case investigation and management, water and sanitation, health education, promotion and food hygiene,” said Dr Nevio Zagaria, WHO Representative in Yemen.
The fight is far from over. The rainy season runs from mid-April to the end of August, which will further increase the risk of transmission. The epidemic continues to threaten millions in Yemen, especially pregnant women, the elderly, and small children like Mossaad and Baraa. Efforts are concerted to save lives of vulnerable population groups and get Yemen rid of this water borne but preventable disease.
WHO Grade 2 Emergencies [to 9 Jun 2018]
UN OCHA – L3 Emergencies
The UN and its humanitarian partners are currently responding to three ‘L3’ emergencies. This is the global humanitarian system’s classification for the response to the most severe, large-scale humanitarian crises.
:: Yemen: Cyclone Mekunu Situation Report No. 1, 7 June 2018
An inter-cluster mission led by OCHA visited Socotra from 29 May to 4 June to assess humanitarian needs in the aftermath of cyclone “Mekunu”. The mission was able to visit approximately 70 per cent of the affected areas and assess the status of critical infrastructure such as main roads, water networks and hospitals. While on the ground, the team initiated the distribution of food and non-food items to affected population..
:: Yemen Humanitarian Update Covering 29 May – 4 June 2018 | Issue 18
UN OCHA – Corporate Emergencies
When the USG/ERC declares a Corporate Emergency Response, all OCHA offices, branches and sections provide their full support to response activities both at HQ and in the field.
:: Ethiopia Humanitarian Bulletin Issue 54 | 21 May – 03 June 2018
ECHO announces €2 million to IOM to deliver critical ES/NFIs humanitarian aid to 55,000 flood-affected displaced persons
:: Humanitarian Bulletin Somalia, 1 May – 3 June 2018
Cyclone Sagar leaves a trail of destruction
We will cluster these recent emergencies as below and continue to monitor the WHO webpages for updates and key developments.
EBOLA/EVD [to 9 Jun 2018]
[See Milestones above for detail]