Tuesday May 15, 2018

IOM has deployed 8 teams to provide emergency primary healthcare for IDPs and host populations in the targeted regions in Somalia. SUPPLIED

— IOM, the UN Migration Agency, in close
partnership with the Ministries of Health in Somaliland and Puntland,
will provide emergency life-saving health services to some 48,000
drought-affected people in the Sool, Sanaag and Mudug regions over the
next five months, with funding from the UN Central Emergency Response
Fund (CERF).

“There is a continuous need for health services due to the critical
health gaps across Somalia,” said Abdikadir Abdow, IOM Somalia’s Health
Programme Officer.

The massive migration from rural to urban and peri-urban centres in
Somalia has placed a strain on the capacity of municipal authorities to
provide basic services, further exacerbating existing vulnerabilities,
particularly among women, children, the elderly, persons with
disabilities and marginalized communities. Aid agencies estimate that
over 2 million people remain internally displaced in Somalia.

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Some of the worst affected districts continue to grapple with limited
access to life-saving assistance.  Crisis-affected communities in these
areas are disproportionally affected by food insecurity, malnutrition,
and disease outbreaks.

In response to the effects of the drought and current flooding, the
project will provide access to emergency primary healthcare for IDPs and
host populations in the targeted regions. IOM has deployed four
Integrated Emergency Rapid Response Teams (IERTs) in each of the
targeted states.

“In close partnership with regional and federal ministries of health
and local communities, IERTs are [deployed to] underserved regions with
limited access in order to prevent deterioration of the health status of
vulnerable communities, especially women and children,” Abdow said.

He added: “The eight teams will provide life-saving primary health
services to 48,000 Somalis including consultations, nutrition
screenings, referral services and health education.”

In 2017, IOM set up 22 static clinics and 33 IERTs, up from 10 and 4
static clinics and IERTs, respectively, in 2016. This was a more than a
threefold expansion in operations which extended IOM’s health coverage
to underserved areas.

The massive increase in service provision in the second quarter of
2017 was enabled by CERF. IOM provided over 550,000 individuals with
health consultations in 2017.



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