2 December 2012

Sudan: Unamid Lends Resources to Fighting Yellow Fever in Darfur

Photo: Albert González Farran/UN
Hospital staff are inoculated against yellow fever before seeing patients (file photo).

El Fasher — In an effort to combat the spread of yellow fever in Darfur, the African Union - United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) has leant its critical logistics support to the Sudanese Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO) in their fight to save lives.

The urgency to address the disease, in which the first suspected case was registered in September, came in late October following a spike in the number of those cases in Central Darfur and a spread to the region's other states. As a result of the outbreak, 2.4 million doses of the vaccine against yellow fever were made available for Sudan by the International Coordination Group on Vaccines, which controls the global stock of vaccines.

Upon receipt of the vaccines, the first batches were airlifted by UNAMID from Khartoum to Darfur on 18 November with additional batches brought shortly thereafter by the Government of Sudan. The Mission was further requested to airlift several hundred tons of injection materials and other items from State capitals to localities.

With the medication in place and facilities ready to administer it, vaccination campaigns began in West Darfur on 20 November, in North Darfur on 24 November and in Central and South Darfur on 25 November.

The Mission's assistance has also included security escorts, technical services and medical expertise, as well as the use of assets including generators for rural medical facilities and isolation tents.

UNAMID is currently arranging for the transportation of large quantities of insecticide which will be used for vector control in internally displaced person camps and in the Central Darfur town of Zalingei.

"We are here to help the people of Darfur. By working together with our humanitarian partners and the Ministry of Health we are able to save lives," said UNAMID Acting Joint Special Representative and Joint Chief Mediator a.i. Aïchatou Mindaoudou.

Michael R Meyer, Director, Communications and Public Information Division, meyer@un.org

Chris Cycmanick, Head, Media Relations, cycmanick@un.org, mobile: +249 (0)91 253 8436

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