Humanitarian Health Action

Health Cluster Situation Report No. 25 - 4 and 5 December 2008

The latest information on WHO, health partners and health needs during the current crisis in North Kivu:

Main points

  • DRC and Rwanda representatives met in Goma and adopted a military plan against the rebels Rwandan Hutu present in the east of the country;
  • talks between DRC and CNDP representatives announced in Nairobi on 8 December;
  • Concentration of CNDP troops around Kibumba, 20 km north of Goma.

Situation update

  • Congolese and Rwandan chiefs of diplomacy started discussions on 4 December on the conflict in North Kivu and the two rebellions present in the province, the CNDP and the Democratic liberation forces of Rwanda (FDLR), the militiamen Rwandan Hutu opposed to the Rwandan Government. The two parties jointly approved an operational plan against the rebel groups.
  • The DRC Government announced that a meeting would take place on 8 December in Nairobi with representatives of the CNDP to formalize the ceasefire. This meeting will take place under the auspices of the United Nations and its Special Envoy for the DRC, Olusegun Obasanjo.
  • A military concentration of the CNDP was observed in Kibumba, 20 km North of Goma, as well as in Rutshuru and Ngungu. The curfew remains in force in Goma.

Health situation assessment

  • The cholera epidemic persists: 16 new cases were notified on 4 December, four in the cholera treatment centre (CTC) of Kibati I, four in Virunga general referral hospital and eight in the Rutshuru general referral hospital. On 5 December, 18 new cases were notified, six cases in Kibati I, seven in Virunga and five in Rutshuru, for a total of 34 cases with no deaths in two days. From 24 to 30 November, North Kivu notified 332 cases and 13 deaths. Between 1 January and 30 November, 10 078 cases and 201 deaths were recorded (CFR 1,9%).

Health Cluster response

  • The Health Cluster has established a cholera contingency plan which includes mapping of CTC and interventions.
  • WHO provides technical and logistic support against the outbreak by providing essential medicines to NGOs operating in the various IDP camps;
  • WHO is reinforcing the routine collection of data in the various provincial health facilities and the analysis of malaria and cholera epidemiologic data in Karisimbi and Goma health zones;
  • WHO and the International Medical Corps work in close cooperation to improve data collection and epidemiologic surveillance in health facilities supported by IMC;
  • Health Cluster partners met on 4 December at the WHO office in Kinshasa to share updated information on the humanitarian situation in the Kivu provinces and Orientale province and on partners’ response.

Urgent needs

  • Improvement of hygiene conditions and provision of water to reduce the risks of cholera spreading.
  • Protection of IDPs and humanitarian workers.
  • Creation of protected humanitarian corridors.
IDPs expecting food distribution.
For more information, please contact:

Dr Matthieu Kamwa, WHO Representative to the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Dr Brice Ahounou, Emergency and Humanitarian Action (EHA) Focal Point

Mr Eugène Kabambi, Communications Officer, EHA, Kinshasa

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