Guinea

UNICEF Guinea Humanitarian Situation Report No 1, 01 January - 30 June 2022

Attachments

Highlights

  • 2,551,234 children were vaccinated in 22 health districts affected by the measles outbreak.

  • 10,737 children (6,013 boys and 4,724 girls) aged 6 to 59 months with severe acute malnutrition, including 1,369 children with medical complications, were hospitalized and treated nationwide, in 416 health centres, with UNICEF support UNICEF and its partners.

  • The prefecture of Guéckédou, N'Zérékoré region, faced an epidemic of Lassa fever which was officially declared by the Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene on April 20, 2022. Two positive cases were reported with 285 contacts followed up, but no death recorded.

  • 5,000 people benefited from enhanced infection prevention and control interventions in 10 health facilities in the prefecture of Guéckédou, N'Zérékoré region, during the response to Lassa fever.

  • A total of 336 children (including 159 girls) in direct and indirect contact with COVID19 cases, received psychosocial support from social workers trained with UNICEF support during the Lassa fever response.

Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs

Guinea is a coastal country that experienced a coup d'état on September 5th, 2021, while already in a deleterious political context, and now at the risk of possible sanctions by ECOWAS. In this tense environment, socio-political actors disagree on the modalities and the 36-month duration of the transition period proposed by the transitional government.

In Guinea, the weak capacity of health facilities in terms of community-based surveillance, early warning system and adequate care contributes to the development of an environment that is conducive to the emergence of other epidemics such as measles, meningitis, yellow fever, Ebola virus disease, Lassa fever, and Marburg.

The prefecture of Guéckédou, N'Zérékoré region, faced an epidemic of Lassa fever, officially declared by the Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene on April 20, 2022. Two positive cases were reported with 285 contacts followed up, but no reported death.

The health challenge for the most vulnerable populations has become even more daunting in the context of the COVID19 pandemic. Community transmission of COVID-19 continues in Guinea. As of June 29, 2022, the country recorded a cumulative total of 37,123 positive cases of COVID-19 with 36,218 cured and 443 hospital deaths. The COVID-19 positivity index in the country stood at 5.3% as of June 20, 2022. Even after the COVID19 crisis is over, it is likely that it will have a lasting socio-economic impact on local populations, especially children and women who are the most vulnerable.

The battle against the COVID-19 pandemic continues unabated; The Guinean government through the Ministries of Health and Public Hygiene, and Ministry of Education and partners, have intensified COVID19 vaccination, with expansion to children aged 12 to 17 years starting 10 January 2022. In Guinea, the age group 12-17 years targeted by this vaccination campaign forms nearly 80% of the school population. As of June 29, 2022, 613 803 children (34.83%) received the first dose, and 119,800 children (6.80%) were fully vaccinated.

Due to concerns about the emergence of new COVID-19 variants, needs assessment missions were conducted to prevent the spread of the disease in schools located in the most at risk areas. These assessments recommended the provision of new handwashing kits to some of the schools.

Beyond the COVID19 pandemic, Guinea continues to face resurgence of a number of health epidemics (measles, polio, etc), in part due to the under performance of the routine expanded programme of immunization (EPI). To date, less than a third of children under the age of five are fully vaccinated. In the first half of the year, 22 health districts across the country's 38 faced a measles outbreak. A national campaign targeting children aged 6 to 59 months was organized from 19 to 24 May 2022 and 2,551,234 children were vaccinated with 100% of the coverage rate.

In Guinea, malnutrition is a public health problem and a vector of fragility for children, especially via exposure to diseases and ultimately mortality. Chronic malnutrition affects 30% of children 6–59-month-old. Coverage of interventions (curative, preventive and promotional) in nutrition remains low. Less than 10 per cent of affected and targeted children are cared for and only 15 per cent of children under 5 years of age benefit from the necessary preventive and promotional interventions.

Floods remain one of the most recurrent and pressing risks threatening agricultural production in Guinea. They are often caused by torrential and intermittent rains, particularly in Upper Guinea. An estimated 70,000 people affected by the floods, or 10,000 affected households, have been in need of humanitarian assistance in the last five (5) years (2017-2021).