US Government Provides US$ 1.25 million to fight the measles outbreak, as well as to control COVID-19 in Kazakhstan
Nur Sultan, Kazakhstan - The U.S. Government, through the Agency for International Development (USAID), has provided US$ 750,000 to support Kazakhstan's response to the measles outbreak and additional US$ 500,000 to support the COVID-19 control. USAID provides these funds through the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to implement both programs in Kazakhstan.
"We sincerely thank USAID for partnering in such important programs for children's lives to prevent a measles outbreak and minimize the risks associated with COVID-19 in Kazakhstan. We believe that these projects will help save and preserve the lives and health of Kazakhstani children and families," said UNICEF Representative in Kazakhstan Arthur van Diesen.
The Measles Outbreak Prevention Program aims to identify the root causes of the outbreak, raise public awareness of the problem, and provide comprehensive training to health professionals on current immunization issues.
Kazakhstan is one of the top ten countries in the region with a large number of cases of measles, including an outbreak in 2019. The complication of the epidemiological situation for measles has been observed since November 2018. Last year, the Ministry of Health reported that 19 children died due to an outbreak of measles. For the 1st quarter of 2020, 2,839 cases of measles were registered, including 1,960 cases (69%) were registered among children under 14 years of age. This indicates the gaps in population immunization that are likely to be exacerbated by interruptions in childhood vaccination associated with COVID-19. The Program will provide technical support to analyze the causes of the measles outbreak, study parents' views on vaccination and awareness campaigns, as well as recommendations for improving the supply of vaccines and providing training and support to health workers on immunization.
The second joint USAID-UNICEF program is aimed at supporting Kazakhstan's efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Global data on COVID-19 shows that the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic leads to disastrous consequences for millions of children worldwide. In Kazakhstan, the crisis threatens the well-being of children in key areas such as education, safety and health. USAID and UNICEF will support the most vulnerable populations and families with children, including the dissemination of information on the prevention and control of COVID-19 for children affected by migration, children living in residential institutions, children with disabilities, adolescents at risk of mental health problems and their parents, as well as pregnant women and people with poor access to water and sanitation.
The Program will also provide training webinars on infection prevention and control for specialists in the health and education sectors, including ungraded schools and non-governmental organizations. The Program also includes the aspect of psycho-social support of the population, which will be conducted jointly with the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Republican Center for Mental Health.
In addition, UNICEF, in partnership with the National Volunteer Network, will continue to train and interact with volunteers on how to detect and prevent the spread of false information about coronavirus through the involvement of young people.
#Note for editors
USAID is the world’s premier international development agency and a catalytic actor driving development results. USAID’s work advances U.S. national security and economic prosperity, demonstrates American generosity, and promotes a path to recipient self-reliance and resilience. To know more, visit: https://www.usaid.gov/central-asia-regional and USAID/Central Asia’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/USAIDCentralAsia.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org. Follow UNICEF Kazakhstan on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
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UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org.