· In early September 2011, the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) began identifying cases of dengue fever, followed by an outbreak of dengue fever in the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) approximately one month later. As of January 11, 2011, Government of FSM (GoFSM) officials had recorded 1,082 clinical cases of dengue fever and two dengue-related deaths in Yap State, including 843 cases in Yap proper and 239 cases in four outer atolls. As of December 28, Government of RMI (GoRMI) health officials had recorded more than 1,360 clinical dengue fever cases in RMI with no dengue-related deaths.
· In response, the GoFSM and GoRMI have taken steps to treat and limit the spread of the disease with support from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), and the U.N. World Health Organization (WHO). USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) staff, including an RMI-based Disaster Assistance Coordinator (DAC), continue to monitor the situation and coordinate with the CDC, GoFSM, GoRMI, and other U.S. Government (USG) agencies.
· From October 13 to November 9, a USAID/OFDA logistics officer traveled to FSM and RMI to evaluate local ports, airports, and warehouses, as well as to hold meetings regarding logistics capacity for humanitarian aid in the two countries, allowing USAID/OFDA to build working relationships with key stakeholders in advance of a disaster response. As a result of assessments, USAID/OFDA is formulating an action plan to improve capacity for storing and delivering relief supplies in the region.
· From October 13 to November 5, a USAID/OFDA communications officer conducted an assessment of communications infrastructure in FSM and RMI to determine whether USAID/OFDA’s existing communications capabilities are sufficient to support a potential disaster response. The findings resulted in the creation of a Communications Plan to enhance communicative ability during a potential disaster response in FSM or RMI.