Following an exploratory mission to Homs Governorate in the Syrian Arab Republic, the UN reports that the humanitarian situation in the governorate (population 2.2 million) continues to deteriorate, with an estimated 550 000 people in need of humanitarian assistance. Priority needs relate to health care, food aid, shelter, water and sanitation, and education.
A training workshop on Early Warning Alert and Response (EWARS) on epidemic surveillance was conducted by WHO in Damascus from 10 to 12 September. More than 40 surveillance officers from 10 of Syria’s 14 governorates were trained on early epidemic preparedness and rapid response for surveillance.
Findings of a WHO rapid health assessment of Al-Qaim camps, border area and public buildings hosting displaced populations in Iraq show that there is a lack of essential medicines and lack of access to obstetric care, child care, and emergency health care, and gaps in management of chronic illnesses and outbreak prevention and control.