Typhoon Ompong in the Philippines and a case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome in the Republic of Korea may seem like two unrelated events thousands of kilometres apart, but they offer the same lesson. They both highlight the importance of preparedness for outbreaks and emergencies.
On 15 September 2018, Typhoon Ompong (known internationally as Mangkhut) hit the northern part of the Philippines, bringing with it flash floods, storm surges and landslides. The typhoon displaced over 270,000 people in Regions I, II, III, Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), and National Capital Region. As of this update, 90% of the population who were displaced have now returned to their homes. Eight provincial government areas and seven cities/municipalities have been placed under a state of calamity.
Typhoon Ompong (known internationally as Mangkhut) made landfall in Baggao, Cagayan, in the north-eastern Philippines in the early hours of 15 September 2018. With sustained wind speeds of more than 205 km/h and gusts of 255 km/h, the typhoon caused flash flooding, storm surges and landslides, leaving a path of destruction in its wake. It is the strongest storm to hit the Philippines this year and the strongest since Typhoon Haiyan (known locally as Yolanda) in 2013.
• Health cluster partners provided consultation services to 385,574 individuals in 371 health facilities (including 15 mobile health units). Of this, 185,844 were reached through funds received from the humanitarian appeal process.
• The effects of floods has led to the increased cases of vector borne diseases including malaria. In July, a total of 1,4822 confirmed cases were recorded by health cluster partners.
• During 2018, 6,9794 suspected cases of measles were reported, of this 562 was reported in July.
At a glance
- On Monday 23 July, heavy rains overwhelmed an auxiliary dam of a hydroelectric project, causing catastrophic flash flooding in villages downstream.
- More than a hundred people remain missing and thousands are taking shelter in temporary camps.
- WHO is working with the Ministry of Health and partners to prevent, detect and control disease outbreaks and ensure affected communities can access life-saving health services.
• Health cluster partners provided consultation services to 805,167 individuals in 395 health facilities (including 19 mobile health units).
• In attending to the flood affected patients, partners continue to record increased incidences of malaria. A total of 7,0042 confirmed cases of malaria were reported in 2018.
• During 2018, 5.0474 suspected cases of measles were reported, 650 in May and 419 in June.
• In response to flooding along river Juba and Shebelle, partners provided health services to 665,128 patients.
The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season was particularly active and severe, well above average, with seventeen named storms, ten hurricanes, and six major hurricanes. This compares to the long-term averages of twelve named storms, six hurricanes, and three major hurricanes.
5 June 2018 – Within a week, 2 record-setting tropical cyclones that formed in the Gulf of Aden made landfall, wreaking widespread havoc in Somalia, Oman and Yemen. The World Health Organization is supporting direct response efforts in Somalia and Yemen, while Oman relies on its preparedness developed in partnership with WHO.
In October 2016, Haiti was hit by its strongest hurricane for more than half a century. Hurricane Matthew caused enormous damage, killing more than 470 people, leaving more than 175 000 homeless and decimating what little infrastructure the country had.
Despite the devastation, within five days of receiving a request for help, WHO medical supplies – including cholera and malaria diagnosis and treatment kits – were being delivered to affected areas.
The PAHO/WHO Country Office for Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands donated computers and communication equipment to the Ministry of health.
The PAHO/WHO Country Office for Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands donated computers and communication equipment to the Ministry of health, The Bahamas, to strengthen its emergency response operational capacity of the Ministry of Health. Additionally, a small contribution was made towards the repair of a Community clinic in Ragged Island that was damaged by Hurricane Irma.
Review the biggest health stories from WHO in 2017. Relive some of WHO's major achievements in the past year.
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Con el objetivo de evaluar daños y definir estrategias, funcionarios de la Organización Panamericana de la Salud y de la Organización Mundial de la Salud en Cuba, visitaron varios de los municipios cubanos más afectados durante el paso del Huracán Irma.
El recorrido contó con la presencia de la Sra. Virginia Andre, Responsable de la Oficina de Ayuda Humanitaria de la Unión Europea (ECHO) para Centroamérica y el Caribe, a través de la cual se recibe un financiamiento para contribuir a la recuperación de las infraestructuras dañadas a causa del desastre natural en la isla.