Humanitarian Health Action

Afghanistan Humanitarian response plan 2016

Afghanistan’s civilian population continues to bear the brunt of a conflict growing in intensity and geographic scope. The increased impact of the conflict is seen in the increased number of civilian casualties, heightened fear and uncertainty, and recurrent displacement. Widespread conflict affects the lives of at least 6.3 million Afghans. By September 2015 the conflict had resulted in 197 000 people fleeing their homes - a 64% increase from 2014.

In the south east, 225 000 people who fled Pakistan’s North Waziristan Agency in 2014 remain caught in what is becoming a protracted refugee crisis. Many vulnerable Afghan refugees also returned from neighbouring countries in 2015.

In 2015, 11 002 civilian casualties (3545 deaths and 7457 injured) were documented, exceeding the previous record levels of civilian casualties that occurred in 2014. As the conflict intensified and expanded in 2015, the number of female and child casualties increased by 37% and 14% respectively. Projections for 2016 estimate that as many as 250 000 people will require humanitarian assistance and protection as they flee their homes and the conflict spreads. The situation was compounded in October 2015 by a 7.5 magnitude earthquake that claimed the lives of more than 100 people and left more than 127 000 people in need of humanitarian assistance.

Health Sector Situation

Conflict further disrupts already inadequate access to basic health care. Approximately 40% of the population lives in areas where there is no public health service coverage. The context of population displacement, inadequate shelter, insufficient and unsafe water and poor sanitation pose significant risk factors associated with outbreaks of communicable disease. The health of around 2.7 million people is affected by the ongoing conflict – this is expected to rise in 2016. Around 695 000 people are at risk of public health outbreaks.

With a 20% increase in the number of wounded casualties in 2015, lifesaving health service provision and trauma care is mandatory to save the lives of an estimated 11 000 casualties in 2016. Over 1.7 million people in conflict ‘white areas’ require urgent medical care to prevent disease outbreaks and serious illness.

With reduced coverage and disruption of health services, outbreaks and the incidence of common communicable diseases have increased in 2015. A total of 169 measles outbreaks were reported from January to August 2015, a 141% increase from the same period of 2014. The majority of outbreaks are reported in districts where frequent conflict, displacement and general accessibility constraints prevent routine health service delivery. Across Afghanistan, access to basic health services continues to decline with coverage in some areas as low as 64%. Despite an estimated burden of one million malnourished children, current treatment reaches less than 30% of those in need.

In 2016, approximately one million children are predicted to need treatment for acute malnutrition. Acute malnutrition makes common diseases, like diarrhoea, respiratory infections and measles, life-threatening. Large parts of Afghanistan have reported malnutrition levels above emergency thresholds yet only an estimated 40% of severely malnourished children are admitted for treatment.

Health Cluster Objectives

Objective 1: Provision of effective trauma care and mass casualty management to conflict and natural disaster affected people

  • Planned outputs:

    100% of conflict-affected districts with at least one First Aid Trauma post providing specialized trauma care.

Objective 2: Ensure access of displaced populations, refugees, returnees and people residing in white conflict areas to emergency health services

  • Planned outputs:

    1 712 565 conflict-affected people residing in white areas (areas with no access to health services) are served by emergency primary health-care/mobile services.

Objective 3: Provide immediate lifesaving assistance to those affected by public health outbreaks and natural disasters

  • Planned outputs:

    100% of outbreak alarms investigated within 48 hours of notification

    694 871 people served by lifesaving assistance during public health outbreaks or disasters.

Beneficiaries targeted by health partners in 2016

Health partners are targeting 3.2 million people in 2016. These include:

  • Conflict displaced: 300 000
  • Health affected by conflict: 1.7 million
  • Natural disaster affected: 200 000
  • Public health at risk: 700 000
  • Refugees and vulnerable returnees: 300 000

Within the groups described above, there are 49% female, 53% children and 5% elderly.

Geographical areas targeted by health partners in 2016

The people targeted for health humanitarian assistance in this response plan (according to the status described above) are in the Capital, Central Highland, Eastern, North Eastern, Northern, South Eastern, Southern and Western regions of the country.

Health Cluster funding requirements for 2016

US$ 39 562 024 (health partners including WHO)

WHO funding requirements for 2016

WHO is requesting a total of US$ 10 000 000

Afghanistan - WHO Humanitarian Response Plan 2016

Health Cluster funding requirements
US$ 39 562 024 (health partners including WHO)

WHO requirements
US$ 10 000 000

Acknowledgement

In 2015 WHO received financial contributions to support its humanitarian work in Afghanistan from the Central Emergency Response Fund, the European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection, France, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Common Humanitarian Fund and the United States of America.

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