Madagascar: Humanitarian Snapshot (as of 19 January 2018)

Originally published


Madagascar is prone to natural disasters. Four main hazards affect the country almost every year: cyclone, floods, drought—which always deteriorates into food insecurity—and epidemics, mainly plague.


  • 161k affected people by the tropical cyclone Ava in Jan 2018

  • 15k displaced people (as of 17 January 2018)

The Tropical Cyclone Ava struck early in January 2018 before the country had recovered from the devastation caused by Cyclone Enawo in early 2017, when 434,000 people were affected. Even if the capacity of the emergency stocks reduced four times during the past 10 years, the immediate needs could be covered for the 161,000 people affected by Ava, of which nearly 15,000 are still displaced.
However, humanitarian actors will not have capacity to immediately respond to a future cyclone, unless these emergency stocks are replenished quickly. The current cyclone season from November to April is likely to be very active, with three or four cyclones expected to hit directly the country, of which at least one will be very strong.


-810k people at risk of food insecurity

A recent Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) analysis found that the food security situation remains very fragile—810,000 people would be in IPC Phases 3 and 4 between November 2017 and March 2018. In addition, SMART surveys indicated some pockets of malnutrition which reached the emergency thresholds.


  • 2,603 cases (August 2017 to January 2018)

  • *225 deaths (August 2017 to January 2018) *

The ongoing plague season is very active. It started earlier than usual, in August 2017, and became a pneumonic plague in urban areas—in the past it was usually a bubonic plague in rural areas. At least 225 people have died to date (compared to an average of 50 deaths in the past seasons) and 2,603 cases have been reported. On 25 November 2017, the Ministry of Health of Madagascar officially announced the containment of the urban pneumonic plague outbreak, after three months of an acute epidemic phase, although more cases of bubonic and sporadic pneumonic plague are expected to be reported until April 2018. WHO has requested an additional US$4 million to sustain response operations over the next three months. Plague outbreaks are endemic in Madagascar.

  • Plague Cases (2014 - 2018)
UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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