• As of 23 October, 31 cases of cholera have been confirmed, in Amant Al Asimah, Aden, Lahj, Al Bayda, Sana’a and Hajjah governorates. Including 15 children under 15 years.
• According to preliminary information, 32 deaths related to Acute Watery Diarrhoea have been reported in six governorates.
• At least 7.6 million people are estimated to be living in affected and at-risk areas. Given the poor sanitation conditions of many communities in Yemen, particularly the ones hosting large number of internally displaced people (IDPs), the situation is likely to worsen rapidly in the coming days.
• UNICEF, with partners, is responding in affected and at-risk areas, through Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), Health and Communication for Development (C4D) activities.
• Since 9 October, over 52,000 people have been reached with additional WASH services provided by UNICEF and more than 60,000 community members have been sensitised through C4D activities.
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs
On 6 October 2016, Yemen’s Ministry of Public Health and Population (MoPHP) officially confirmed a cholera outbreak in the country. The situation is particularly serious given the collapse of the health system – with 54 per cent of health facilities not functioning or partially functioning1 - poor sanitation services and practices, as well as the deteriorated nutrition situation, posing an additional health risk to the population, particularly children.
As of 23 October, 644 suspected cases had been reported. According to the MoPHP by 23 October the number of confirmed cases has risen to 31, of which five children are under 5 years, six are between 5 and 10 years, and four cases are children from 10 to 15 years.2 Cholera cases have been confirmed in Amanat Al Asimah (12), Aden (9), Lahj (1), Al Bayda (4), Sana’a (4) and Hajjah (1) governorates. According to preliminary reports from local authorities, 32 deaths related to Acute Watery Diarrhoea have been reported in Taizz (4), Al Hudaydah (8), Aden (8), Lahj (8), Al Bayda (2), and Sana’a governorate (2).
At least 7.6 million people are living in areas affected by acute watery diarrhoea (AWD) and cholera and a total of nine governorates have been assessed as high risk in terms of a cholera outbreak.
Given the poor sanitation conditions of many of the most vulnerable, including nearly one million internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in host communities in the affected governorates, there is a very real possibility that the disease will be spreading much further and faster unless a wide-reaching response is mounted. Health partners estimate that without a comprehensive multi-sector response, the incidence of acute watery diarrhoea/cholera is likely to rise rapidly, with up to 76,000 additional cases across 15 governorates. This would include an estimated 15,200 cases requiring admission for cholera treatment, putting additional strains on a collapsing health system.