UNICEF MENA CoViD-19 Situation Report No.3
15 - 30 April 2020
- The number of COVID-19 cases in the MENA region increased by 32 per cent increase in just one week.
- In Yemen, five new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Aden - three weeks after the only previous laboratory-confirmed case was detected in the Eastern governorate of Hadramout. This suggests that the virus could well be circulating undetected and is a major concern due to the fragile and overwhelmed health system along with weak Infection, Prevention and Control (IPC) in health facilities. A sharp increase in cases (375) and deaths (28) was recorded in Sudan, with a high case fatality ratio (8.9%) suggesting potential under-reporting of cases. Of concern are also the first cases recorded in refugee camps in Djibouti, Lebanon, and the State of Palestine.
- UNICEF reached nearly 100 million people with Risk Communications and Community Engagement (RCCE) messages on COVID-19 prevention. Specific materials for the Holy Month of Ramadan were disseminated, including through TV in Libya and Iraq. In Lebanon, several religious leaders engaged directly in the messaging, while in the State of Palestine, a specific multi-media campaign reached 4 million people.
- 15 million children are at risk of missing measles and polio vaccinations due to postponement of campaigns, notably in Syria, Lebanon, Sudan, Djibouti, Yemen and Iraq. UNICEF is providing basic supplies and vaccines to resume or support continuity of immunization campaigns. Routine vaccinations continue across the region.
- UNICEF is actively promoting and supporting the scaling up of social protection schemes or incentive packages to support children at risk of dropping out of school when schools reopen. In Jordan, 35,000 households have received their allocation of a temporary cash transfer from the National Aid Fund (NAF), while in Morocco, 1.8 million households received humanitarian multi-sector cash grants to cover basic needs.
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