Humanitarian Health Action

Myanmar-Thailand border

In Myanmar, decades of internal conflict have negatively affected the lives of hundreds of thousands of civilians in Myanmar's border areas. Although figures are unreliable, more than one million people are estimated internally displaced in the eastern border area of Myanmar.

The ten provinces in Thailand which border Myanmar are populated by 6.8 million Thais, over 120,000 displaced persons in nine UNHCR-run camps, and an estimated 500,000 to 1 million registered and undocumented migrants. The undocumented migrants are the largest public health concern, as many do not have access to health services, have increased morbidity and present a number of public health risks, such as low immunization rates.

While some members of the at-risk migrant population live in settlements, others are highly mobile, moving back and forth across the border. This raises increased concerns over the transmission of disease, such as multi-drug resistant tuberculosis, meningitis, diphtheria, measles and drug-resistant malaria. Malaria and tuberculosis are particular concerns in the border provinces.

Non-WHO documents

More information on the Myanmar - Thailand border crisis

Cyclone Nargis 4 May

Cyclone Nargis struck Myanmar on 4 May, government estimate at least 15 000 death and tens of thousands homeless. The death toll is likely to climb as the authorities reach the outlying islands and villages that felt the full force of the cyclone. Aid workers are trying to assess the damage and provide assistance but access is difficult and movement restricted.