African Union Permanent Representatives' Committee (PRC) Briefing on The Outbreaks Of Communicable Diseases Of 2016 In Different Parts Of Africa

Report
from African Union
Published on 16 Aug 2016 View Original
preview

Background

There is an increased recognition of the severe impact of epidemic diseases on socioeconomic and political stability in Africa. The growing mobility of populations and commodities acts as a catalyst for the spread of diseases across borders. A Technical Report by World Health organization, May 2016, has listed out approximately 50 public health events of close to 15 epidemic-prone diseases in Africa that were reported to WHO between the period of January to May 2016. An increase of communicable disease outbreak, partially combined with the current El Nino 2015-2016, exacerbates health problems.

The recent outbreak of Ebola and its social-economic impact in the continent is an example of the effects of communicable disease as a humanitarian crisis. Other ongoing outbreaks in the continent such as yellow fever, cholera, chikungunya and unknown haemorrhagic fever continues to add a burden on humanitarian response.

African Union Commission and United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) wish to use the opportunity of the African Humanitarian Week (15-19 August 2016) to inform Member States and create awareness on communicable disease outbreaks in Africa as part of humanitarian crisis. We are organizing an information sharing event for Permanent Representative Council (PRC) to provide a situational awareness on what prevails in Africa Continent with regards to disease outbreak.

Objectives

The overall objective of the PRC briefing is to raise awareness about the spread of communicable diseases in Africa to inform decisions at the highest levels of the AU and its member states and; to mobilize support from a broad range of stakeholders for concrete actions that address the impacts of communicable diseases.
Specific objectives are:

  • To provide a situational awareness on the recent epidemics of communicable diseases in Africa and public efforts at local, national and regional levels to prepare as well as to responding to the outbreaks.

  • To communicate to the PRC and the Diplomatic Corp on anticipated communicable diseases public health threats for the coming 6 months.

  • To mobilize support from a broad range of stakeholders to scale up current responses.