WHO Libya: Health response to COVID-19 in Libya, update # 11 (Reporting period: 9 to 22 July 2020)



  • Under WHO’s transmission scenarios, Libya remains classified as “clusters of cases”. In the past two weeks, the number of reported people infected with COVID-19 has doubled and now stands at 2176. Of this number, 1634 people remain actively infected with COVID-19, 489 (22.47%) people have recovered, and 53 people have died. The national case fatality rate is 2.44%. The municipalities reporting a significant increase are Sebha, Tripoli, Zliten, Misrata, Ashshatti, Ubari, Traghen, Janzour and Khoms.

  • Thus far, a total of 49 329 specimens have been tested. This number includes 28 355 in Tripoli, 11 627 in Benghazi, 4118 in Misrata and 3918 in Sebha.

  • The COVID-19 laboratory network has expanded to 15, distributed across eight municipalities.

  • In collaboration with the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), WHO is assisting local health authorities by providing hands-on training on COVID-19 prevention, infection control and case management to health care workers in health facilities and isolation centres.

  • Across Libya, unemployment and mobility restrictions, as well as migrants’ lack of access to livelihoods, have significantly increased food insecurity, reduced access to health services, and eroded the coping capacities of vulnerable segments of the population.

  • There have been fresh population displacements from Tarhouna and Sirte to the eastern municipalities. The COVID-19 response capacity of these municipalities needs to be assessed and their emergency response capacity, including for COVID-19, needs to be strengthened.

  • WHO and IOM are collaborating closely on the COVID-19 response with respect to surveillance at points of entry (POEs) and the case management of COVID-19 migrant patients.

  • WHO COVID-19 and disease surveillance teams are following up with the NCDC to ensure that the disease surveillance system captures data on migrant and other non-Libyan segments of the population.

  • In Sebha, COVID-19 cases are still increasing (744 confirmed cases), and the city continues to register the highest numbers of active cases (523) in the country. 194 people in Sebha have recovered and 27 have died.
    All the municipalities in the south have recorded positive cases, with the highest percentages in Sebha and Ashshatti. Poor living conditions are exacerbating the situation and hampering the response to the pandemic. Fuel shortages and daily electricity cuts of more than 18 hours are affecting the functioning of health facilities. Liquidity is another serious concern: many people have not been paid for several months. Armed robberies and tribal clashes are increasing, and there is poor coordination between the security and military forces and the health authorities in Sebha.