Ensuring disease surveillance and responding to outbreaks in Côte d’Ivoire
UNHCR is building a new site for 10 000 internally displaced people in Niably to relieve the pressure on Duékoué where up to 30 000 people are gathered in insalubrious over-crowding. WHO is negotiating with the NGO Caritas for the provision of health care in the new camp. WHO will supply medicines and cash for expenditure and Caritas will staff the health post and ensure the provision of health care for the next six months.
The disease surveillance system is now in place with three epidemiologists posted in Bouaké, Abidjan and Duékoué. Montagnes and Moyen-Cavally Regions in the west, Lagunes in the south and selected areas in the centre and the north are now under surveillance for diarrhoeal diseases (cholera), measles, meningitis, haemorrhagic fever and polio. The system also monitors occurrences of sexual violence.
Since May, the system has alerted health partners to one measles outbreak in the west and to several cases in the centre and north. Rapid vaccination campaigns were organized in all affected districts. Between 10 and 14 June, 170 000 children were immunized in Kunahiri, Mankono, Minignan, Odienné, Sinfra and Zuenoula districts.
Three confirmed polio cases were also detected, one in Duékoué and two in Abidjan. Last week, five suspected cases have been detected: two in Man, two in Duékoué and one in Bouaké. A nationwide campaign is being organized from 24 to 27 June.
In Abidjan, the surveillance system detected 42 cholera cases and three related deaths. Early detection permitted a swift response, preventing transmission to a wider population and keeping the number of fatalities low. WHO provided medicines and supplies to MSF-Switzerland who carried out the interventions. UNICEF is supporting water and sanitation activities.
In the west, Save the Children, COOPI, the International Rescue Committee (IRC) and Caritas continue to provide mobile health services in and around around Bangolo, Duékoué ,Guiglo, Bloléquin, Toulepleu, Zouan Hounien and Danané with WHO’s support. The teams deployed to the various sites also report to the surveillance system. The services will be maintained, provided funds are sufficient, until national health services can be re-established.
The three epidemiologists and one of the NGOs are funded by the latest CERF rapid response grant. Two additional NGOs are funded by Finland and Spain and a fourth by WHO’s rapid response account.
WHO is negotiating with ECHO for a grant to support coordination and expand disease surveillance. WHO is also preparing a new project with the CERF to extend the duration of mobile health services in Montagnes and Moyen-Cavally.