Chad + 9 more

Health Action in Crises - Highlights No. 165 - 8 to 15 Jul 2007

Situation Report
Originally published


Each week, the World Health Organization Health Action in Crises in Geneva produces information highlights on the health aspects of selected humanitarian crises. Drawing on the various WHO programmes, contributions cover activities from field and country offices and the support provided by WHO regional offices and Headquarters. The mandate of the WHO Departments specifically concerned with Emergency and Humanitarian Action in Crises is to increase the effectiveness of the WHO contribution to crisis preparedness and response, transition and recovery. This note, which is not exhaustive, is designed for internal use and does not reflect any official position of the WHO Secretariat.


- The Health Cluster and Health Emergency Preparedness and Response cell were activated in Islamabad. There are daily health coordination meetings. A Health Emergency Operations Centre is open in Karachi and Quetta.

- A Global Emergency Shelter Cluster meeting took place in Geneva on 11 July.

Assessments and events:

At least 250 people were killed and 2 million affected by flooding in Sindh (Karachi), Balochistan and the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP). A new weather system entering the region is raising concerns for new flooding.

In Balochistan, communication, assessment and aid remain difficult and medicines are delivered by foot. Two relief camps and seven medical camps are currently in operation. No epidemics have been reported. Chaghai district remains inaccessible.

In Sindh, 107 000 people are displaced and 150 000 affected. Seven mobile and fixed medical camps are currently active. Fifty cases of dengue fever and two deaths have been reported in Karachi.

In NWFP, further heavy rains on 8 July have triggered landslides and flooding in Kohistan District with 22 deaths reported. Three refugee camps have also been reported flooded with UNHCR providing assistance.

Shortages of drinking water are reported from the affected districts; 1950 suspected acute watery diarrhoea (AWD) cases and over 300 snake bites have been notified through the Disease Early Warning System (DEWS). Malaria, acute respiratory infections and skin infections are reported in some areas.

Urgent needs include rescue services, medical teams, food and shelter, oral rehydration salts, vector control and essential medications.

Security in northern Pakistan has deteriorated over the last week.


WHO has four international surge staff from EMRO and HAC supporting logistics, assessments and coordination. The disease surveillance system (DEWS) has been activated.

WHO assessment teams are in the field in multiple locations. WHO participated in the NDMA common assessment mission and a joint MoH/WHO evaluation in NWFP.

WHO dispatched one New Emergency Health Kit and 20 NEHK basic units, eight trauma kits, one diarrhoeal disease kit, 450 000 chlorine tablets and 665 doses of snake anti-venom. WHO is also procuring oral rehydration salts for Kambar District. Local and regional procurement of medicines is ongoing.

Health cluster and health emergency preparedness and response cells were activated in Islamabad and Karachi; a joint flash appeal is being developed.

The CERF has approved a project for life-saving medical supplies and Disease Early Warning and Surveillance for an amount of US$ 896 403.

So far, support for WHO operations has come from Italy and in-house resources with an offer from Norway.