Afghanistan

Afghanistan: COVID-19 Multi-Sectoral Response Operational Situation Report, 29 April 2020

Attachments

HIGHLIGHTS

• Confirmed COVID-19 cases approach 2,000 people across 33 provinces. 61 people have died and 256 recovered.

• Partners have delivered WASH kits and tailored hygiene promotion activities to more than 100,000 people, have reached almost 84,000 people with COVID-19 awareness raising materials, and have supported more than 29,000 women and children with Psychosocial Support services to cope with the emotional consequences of COVID-19.

• Humanitarians continue to monitor secondary impacts of extended lockdowns on vulnerable households and warn these may exacerbate existing needs and push households to adopt negative coping strategies.

• Humanitarian responses to conflict- and natural-disaster emergencies continue, alongside the COVID-19 response.
Partners are modifying implementation plans to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

SITUATION OVERVIEW

MoPH data shows that 1,939 people across 33 provinces in Afghanistan are now confirmed to have COVID-19.
Some 256 people have recovered and 61 people have died. Of the 61 people who have died from COVID-19, 52 had at least one underlying disease, the most common of which are cardio-vascular disease, diabetes, and lung disease. The majority were between ages of 40-69. Men between the ages of 40-69 represent around 60 per cent of all COVID-19-related deaths. Cases are expected to increase rapidly over the weeks ahead as community transmission escalates, creating grave implications for Afghanistan’s economy and people’s well-being. Kabul is now the most affected part of the country, followed by Hirat.

There are currently eight laboratories in the country. Each lab is able to process an average of 100-150 tests per day.
Additional labs in Bamyan and Badakhshan are being established and the Government eventually hopes to have a total of 15 labs operating. Currently laboratory re-agents, ribonucleic acid (RNA) Extraction Kits, COVID-19 specimen collection, and viral transport media (VTM) for transport of specimen are in short supply and this will affect the pace of new labs opening.

A number of provinces have instituted measures to limit the exposure of residents to COVID-19. Throughout the country, these ‘measured lockdowns’ have resulted in closures of sections of each city and/or movement limitations. These include limits on the number of people travelling together and the imposition of curfews. Reports indicate that despite assurances by the Government that these would not limit critical program movements of NGOs and the UN, newly introduced lockdown measures continue to impact on the mobility of some staff members. Humanitarian partners remain active in responding to crises throughout the country and continue to urge the Government to employ a national approach to these issues so that individual negotiations are not required on a case-by-case basis.
Humanitarians remain concerned about the impact of extended lockdown measures on the most-vulnerable, particularly families who rely on causal daily labour and lack alternative income sources. Already, humanitarian partners note a rise in protection risks as vulnerable households resort to negative coping mechanisms to meet basic subsistence needs. As public fear of COVID-19 spreads, humanitarians are also concerned about potential stigmatisation of and discrimination against those who are perceived to have COVID-19, particularly those who have recently returned from neighbouring countries.

Disclaimer

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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