Niger/Sahel: Epidemic: Rift Valley Fever Emergency Plan of Action Final Report DREF operation: MDRNE016


A. Situation analysis

Description of the disaster

On 30th August 2016, Tahoua region alerted the National level of cases of fever with jaundice and bleeding complications in humans, leading to death in most affected cases at community level. Most cases were reported/recorded in the Health District of Tchintabaraden. On the side of livestock, it was found during the same period of abortions in small ruminants and mortality in young calves.

Tahoua region is located in the Southwest part of Niger and covers an area of 113,371 km² with an estimated population of 2,741,922 people. The Health District Tchintabaraden is one of eight districts of the Tahoua region, which covers an area of about 54,000 km² with an estimated population of 250,726 people. The main livelihood activity of the communities in the affected area is agriculture and animal breeding.

The results of the Laboratory test provided by the “Institut Pasteur de Dakar” on 16th September 2016 confirmed the Rift Valley Fever (RVF) in Tchintabaraden zone. From week 31 (August 02) to week 37 (September 18), a total of 52 affected cases including 21 deaths (case fatality rate 40.3%) were reported in the Tchintabaraden district. The outbreak has spread to 2 other districts (Tassara and Abalak) as of 21 September 2016, the total number of affected cases recorded were 60 with 23 deaths. The statistics mention that 87% of the affected population were above the age of 15 years with 63% of them being males while 95% are pastoralists. As of 28 September, 78 cases were recorded with 26 deaths.

In terms of livestock, animals with hyperthermia, breathing difficulties, hyper salivation (animal drooling), bleeding in the various parts, abortions in small ruminants, mortalities among young calves were found. The milk of some animals aborted was streaked with blood. Interviews with the community has identified 363 cases of animal abortions and 370 deaths of young animals (Source: Ministry of Public Health, WHO).

Following this confirmation, the Government declared Rift Valley Fever outbreak on 20 September 2016, appealing for international support. The Government also took preventive and curative measures such as providing treatment to the affected people, reinforcing the social mobilization (information and communication in the communities and via media), and increasing epidemic surveillance. The Ministry of Livestock was in charge of caring on animals and properly burying the corpse of dead animal.

After the official declaration of the epidemic, the Ministry of Health (MoH) requested all its partners in the country to mobilize efforts in order stop the spread of the epidemic through awareness campaign and community-based epidemiological surveillance. The Niger Red Cross (NRCs) society was specifically called upon to support the Government with community- “Niger Rift Valley Fever Epidemic Outbreak DREF operation”- Final Report based activities. Based on this request, the NRCs solicited the support of its Movement partners and specifically the IFRC through a DREF worth CHF 99, 514. The DREF activities were mainly implemented in the Tahoua region of the country.