Ethiopia + 9 more

East & Horn of Africa COVID-19 Situation Report - #20, 26 August 2020 Update

Situation Report
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The number of people infected with COVID-19 in East and Horn of Africa is still increasing with the disease now infecting over 94,000 people. Migrants, including Internally Displaced Persons (IPDs), and similar vulnerable groups are more likely to be disproportionately affected by the impact of COVID-19, compared to non-migrants.

Migratory routes and displacement settings by nature, are more exposed to conditions in which COVID-19 spreads. A lack of access to clean and sanitary conditions and environments, the poorer and makeshift overcrowded living circumstances in which these groups often find themselves, and an over-representation of pre-existing health issues, exacerbates the risk of exposure to the disease. Migrants and similar groups also often do not have access to national public health services, may not feature in government response plans, and may not have access to Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as facemasks. Since many of these groups also rely on mobility to find work, do business, and find work, air, land and sea border closures and movement restrictions are set to be particularly devastating for migrants. Meanwhile, thousands of migrants in East and Horn of Africa remain stranded. Migrants are also disproportionately at risk of experiencing stigma, xenophobia, and being blamed for COVID-19.

As of August 26, the number of positive COVID-19 cases in the region stands at 94,971. 2,138 new cases have been reported in the last day with most new cases reported in Ethiopia (1,545 daily increase 3.7%), followed by Kenya (246 daily increase 0.8%), Rwanda (231 daily increase 7.0%) and Uganda (98 daily increase 4.0%). Ethiopia remains the country with the highest number of confirmed cases in the region at 43,688 (46.0% of total case), followed by Kenya 32,803 (34.5%), followed by Djibouti 5,383 (5.7%).

IOM is supporting governments throughout the region respond to COVID-19 in the areas of risk communication, disease surveillance, infection prevention and control, case management, at ‘Points of Entry’ (PoEs), procurement and logistics, among other areas. IOM is advocating for migrants, including IDPs and similar groups to be included in government response to fight COVID-19. IOM has launched a regional appeal for East & Horn of Africa for $71.6M in April 2020, to meet the many needs of these communities. So far 68% of the required funds have been received. It has also launched a Regional Migrant Response Plan appeal for Horn of Africa and Yemen for migrants affected along the ‘Eastern Route’ from Africa – many of whom have been stranded trying to reach Saudi Arabia and the Gulf.

A link to the appeal can be found here;

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