Emergencies

Spotlights on achievements

WHO has introduced organization-wide reforms to improve our performance during health emergencies. The new single programme marks a fundamental change for WHO, in which our traditional technical and normative functions are augmented by operational capacities.

Recent achievements in responding to health emergencies:

Yellow fever vaccination

A health care worker administering yellow fever vaccination to a young woman

March 2017 -- In response to the on-going yellow fever outbreak in Brazil, some 3.5 million doses of vaccine from the emergency stockpile were deployed to the country through the International Coordinating Group on Vaccine Provision for yellow fever.

Yemen crisis

April 2017 -- Nearly 5 million children under the age of 5 have been vaccinated in a nationwide campaign covering all governorates in Yemen. Despite intensifying violence in Sa’ada governorate, children between the ages of 6 months and 15 years were immunized against measles and children under the age of 5 were vaccinated against polio.

South Sudan

April 2017 -- WHO is supporting the Ministry of Health and partners to roll-out a new approach to community health service delivery in South Sudan called the Boma Health Initiative. Currently, only 40% of people in South Sudan are within reach of health facilities and have consistent access to primary health care services. The Boma Health Initiative seeks to provide sustainable delivery of essential health care and public health programmes at the community level.

Iraq crisis

March 2017 -- WHO, with logistics support from the World Food Programme, airlifted 15 fully equipped ambulances to Iraq in order to better respond to the increasing trauma and medical related emergencies in west Mosul. The ambulances will enhance trauma care at the front lines and ensure timely transfers to field hospitals.

Global health security

March 2017 -- Since February 2016, 34 joint external evaluations (JEE) have been undertaken across all six WHO regions. Sixteen JEE mission reports are published on the WHO website including: Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Jordan, Lebanon Morocco, Pakistan, Qatar, Sierra Leone (NEW), Somalia (NEW), Sudan, (NEW), United Republic of Tanzania, and United States of America.

Somalia crisis

March 2017 -- The Ministry of Health in Somalia, with support from WHO, deployed a technical team to assess the magnitude and challenges of the cholera outbreak in Bay region, and provide technical assistance to scale up the response. The team visited 3 cholera treatment centres and 9 cholera treatment units in Baidoa and surrounding villages.

Nigeria crisis

March 2017 --Simultaneous vaccination campaigns have been completed in Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon and Benin in an effort to stop polio transmission and ensure non-resurgence of the virus in polio-free countries.

Syrian Arab Republic

March 2017 --WHO expands mental health care services across the Syrian Arab Republic. The conflict in Syria is taking its toll on the population, with more people showing signs of mental health disorders, ranging from mild to severe. More than half of all Syrians are estimated to be in need of mental health and psychosocial support services, and one in four children is at risk of a developing mental health disorder. Despite many challenges, mental health services are becoming more widely accessible throughout the Syrian Arab Republic with support from WHO.