Borno - COVID-19 Risk Related Indicators: Assessment of Hard-to-Reach Areas in Northeast Nigeria (April 16-30 2020)

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The continuation of conflict in Northeast Nigeria has created a complex humanitarian crisis, rendering sections of Borno State as hard to reach (H2R) for humanitarian actors. Previous assessments illustrate how the conflict continues to have severe consequences for people in H2R areas. People living in H2R areas who are already facing severe and extreme humanitarian needs risk are even more vulnerable to the spread of COVID-19, especially due to the lack of health care services and information sources. The first confirmed case in Borno state was announced on 20 April 2020. All confirmed cases have been in garrison towns or Maiduguri. Due to the limited access to H2R areas it is unlikely there will be confirmation of an outbreak in these areas. It is therefore of utmost importance to evaluate the situation of the population in H2R areas in order to monitor changes and inform humanitarian aid actors on immediate needs of the communities.


Using its Area of Knowledge (AoK) methodology, REACH remotely monitors the situation in H2R areas through monthly multi-sector interviews in accessible Local Government Area (LGA) capitals with the following typology of Key Informants (KIs):

  • KIs who are newly arrived internally displaced persons (IDPs) who have left a hard-to-reach settlement in the last 3 months1

  • KIs who have had contact with someone living or having been in a hard-to-reach settlement in the last month (traders, migrants, family members, etc.)

Selected KIs are purposively sampled and are interviewed on settlement-wide circumstances in H2R areas. Responses from KIs reporting on the same settlement are then aggregated to the settlement level. The most common response provided by the greatest number of KIs is reported for each settlement. When no most common response could be identified, the response is considered as ‘no consensus’. While included in the calculations, the percentage of settlements for which no consensus was reached is not always displayed in the results below.

Due to precautions related to the COVID-19 outbreak, data was collected remotely through phone based interviews with assistance from local stakeholders.

Results presented in this factsheet, unless otherwise specified, represent the proportion of settlements assessed within a LGA. Findings are only reported on LGAs where at least 5% of populated settlements and at least 5 settlements in the respective LGA have been assessed. The findings presented are indicative of broader trends in assessed settlements in April 2020, and are not statistically generalisable.

Assessment Coverage
183 Key Informants interviewed
106 Settlements assessed
12 LGAs assessed
5 LGAs with sufficient coverage