Ethiopia Humanitarian Bulletin Issue 35 | 21 August – 3 September 2017
• At least 376,055 pregnant and lactating women and children under-5 will benefit from blanket supplementary feeding, with a new US$ 14 million funding from CERF and the Government of Denmark.
• AWD cases rising in Afar, Amhara and Tigray, while the outbreak is stabilizing in Oromia, SNNP and Somali regions.
• The WaSH Cluster has been closely working with the Health and Nutrition clusters to support ongoing multisector/integrated efforts to address the deepening AWD and nutrition crisis in Somali region.
• Emergency seeds need to urgently be distributed to farmers before the planting window closes.
Allocation of US$14 million for Blanket Supplementary Feeding (BSF) for Somali region
$10 million allocation by the Central Emergency Response Fund The Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) allocated US$10 million for WFP through its Rapid Response window for the provision of blanket supplementary feeding in the critically drought-affected areas of Somali region. At least 376,055 pregnant and lactating women and children under-5 will benefit from this program for three months.
Blanket supplementary feeding programs aim to provide food supplements to all members of a particularly vulnerable group in areas where acute malnutrition is widespread. The blanket supplementary feeding, coupled with general relief food distribution and targeted supplementary feeding to rehabilitate the moderately malnourished, is expected to stabilize the rapidly deteriorating nutritional crisis in Somali region.
In February 2017, CERF had provided US$18.5 million through the same window for Somali region to provide high impact life-saving emergency interventions in agriculture, health and water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH) sectors. This is the second CERF allocation for the year. $4 million allocation by the Government of Denmark The Danish Government has also allocated $4million to support BSF in the region. These additional allocations will address moderate (MAM) and severe (SAM) malnutrition until the end of 2017, including for blanket nutritional support for half the children under-5 years and pregnant and lactating women in 22 severely drought-affected Priority 1 districts/woredas/ in Somali region.
AWD rising in Afar, Amhara and Tigray, ceasing in Oromia and SNNP, sporadic in Somali
Increase in new AWD cases reported in Afar, Amhara and Tigray regions
A 27 per cent increase in the number of Acute Watery Diarrhoae (AWD) cases was reported nationwide last week, mainly due to spikes in new cases reported in Amhara and Tigray regions and a resurgence of the outbreak in Afar region where community transmission of the disease is widespread. Currently, the major risk factors for the spread of the outbreak are holy water sites where large numbers of Christian pilgrims congregate from around the country, especially in Amhara and Tigray, and seasonal mobility of daily laborers to commercial farms.
With the limited resources available, the Federal Ministry of Health and Regional Health Bureaus, with support from partners, are implementing multi-sector preventive and control measures. In Tigray region for example, the number of districts affected by the outbreak is slowly decreasing. At the peak of the crisis, 80 per cent of the region was affected. In Amhara region, the regional president held a meeting with private investors to encourage their participation in the ongoing AWD outbreak prevention and response efforts, as well as in addressing other public health threats. Urgent additional support is needed to increase response capacity and case management, together with increased WaSH sector involvement.
The high risk for further spread of the AWD outbreak continues due to the degradation of health determinants on the back drop of overburdened local health systems, including inadequate access to safe drinking water and internal and cross-border movements.
AWD outbreak stabilizing in Oromia, SNNP and Somali regions
In Somali region - the epicenter of the outbreak - the daily case reporting showed a consistent downward trend since its peak in April 2017. In the last two weeks, case reporting stabilized to between 90 - 96 cases per month since July, mostly in Fafan zone.
Meanwhile, cases are sporadically reported in Oromia region, and no cases were reported in SNNP region for more than six weeks