Measles: EU Provides €450,000 in Humanitarian Response to Measles Outbreaks in Somalia
The European Union is committing an additional €450,000 of humanitarian funding to support the fight against life-threatening measles outbreaks in Somalia. With measles cases on the rise in 2021-2022, this funding will support the EU-funded CAAFIMAD consortium led by Action Against Hunger (ACF) in contributing to the reduction of morbidity and mortality from measles. CAAFIMAD partners will work through a combination of district-wide mass vaccination for children under 15 years old, medical management of complicated cases, vitamin A supplementation of children under 5 years old, and screening for malnutrition followed by appropriate management. This intervention builds on efforts undertaken this year in support of measles vaccination in Somalia, under the steer of the Ministry of Health, together with other humanitarian health partners.
Currently, vaccination coverage among displaced children under 15 years of age is extremely low as displaced households come from hard-to-reach areas with limited to no previous humanitarian assistance, including basic health services.
This intervention will scale up outbreak control efforts in the most-affected districts of Galkacyo South, Baidoa, Afgoye and Bardhere in south-central Somalia.
“Today, hundreds of thousands of Somalis, most critically women and children, face famine. Thousands will die preventable deaths in the absence of interventions such as this expanded measles vaccination and treatment effort. Severely malnourished children are nine times more likely to die of measles and other preventable diseases – –immediate availability of treatment is therefore of highest importance,” said Javier Rio Navarro, Head of the EU Humanitarian Aid Office in Somalia.
ECHO’s partner, the World Health Organisation, will also support this effort by providing the necessary material to reinforce lab and surveillance capacities. UNICEF continues to support measles vaccination and other critical vaccination campaigns in Somalia by providing vaccines through the Global Vaccine Alliance, GAVI.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of EU Delegation to Somalia.