Pacific Humanitarian Snapshot (as of 8 January 2016)
Rotavirus in Solomon Islands
A rotavirus outbreak in Solomon Islands has so far claimed the lives of four children. More than 2000 cases of diarrhoea have been reported so far with the outbreak spreading from the capital to the provinces over the holidays. The Ministry of Health and Medical Services, supported by WHO, UNICEF and other partners, is implementing a nationwide response to the outbreak under the Diarrhoea Outbreak Response Action Plan.
Varying El Niño impacts are being felt in many countries across the Pacific. The Australian Bureau of Meteorology advises that El Niño-like conditions across the Pacific have weakened over the past few weeks, while heavy rains associated with recent cyclones have also brought temporary relief. However, the impacts of long term damage to crops are likely to be felt for some time. Assessments are continuing and countries are responding adequately based on need using their own resources or bilateral aid arrangements. Current estimates suggest that 4.3 million people in 12 Pacific countries could be at risk from changed rainfall patterns caused by El Niño (drought and increased rainfall).
67,000 people are reliant on water deliveries as a result of the country’s El Niño-related drought in Western, Eastern and Northern divisions of Fiji.
90,000 targeted with food distributions in areas recovering from TC Pam impacts especially Tanna province, Shepherds islands in Efate province and parts of Malampa province.
18% of households spending more than 30 minutes collecting drinking water up from 5.1% in 2013.
A drought watch has recently been cancelled in the Solomon Islands after recent rainfall which started before Christmas. However there remain food security concerns after repeated interruptions to crop cultivation as a result of cyclones, floods and drought conditions last year. Assessments have revealed food security hot spots in Malaita which is already receiving emergency food deliveries and Makira which will be targeted once assessments have been finalised.
For further information, please contact:
Danielle Parry, Public Information Officer
Telephone: +679 777 1433 or +679 7446673
Arnold Chanel, Public Information Officer
Telephone: +679 777 7165
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit http://unocha.org/.