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Yemen: UN and humanitarian partners respond to COVID-19

12 May 2020

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Food distribution for families in Qatabah District, Aldhalea Governorate, Yemen, 13 April 2020. Credit: MFD/Elyas Alwazir

As of this morning, 58 cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed in Yemen.

The UN and humanitarian partners in Yemen are responding to COVID-19 by focusing on case management, risk communications, community engagement, and protecting the wider public health system.

Together, they have reached more than 20 million people with COVID-related awareness materials through TV channels and radio stations.

More than 7.5 million people have been reached via social media platforms, and more than half a million people have been reached through house-to-house visits.

Some 125.4 metric tons of supplies are already in the country, while 4,836 metric tons are in the pipeline. These include 1,000 intensive care unit beds, 417 ventilators, 52,400 tests and 755,000 pieces of personal protective equipment. 

More supplies are urgently needed to scale up the response.

The UN and partner organizations are also supporting treatment facilities, including 38 isolation units.

More than 300 rapid response teams (with 1,665 staff) have been deployed across the country to follow up on disease reports and refer people for testing and treatment as needed.

Maintaining the wider humanitarian response – including water, sanitation and hygiene, nutrition, health and food programmes – will strengthen Yemenis’ chances against the virus.

None of this work can continue without urgent funding.

Of 41 key UN programmes, 31 are expected to reduce or close down in the coming weeks unless immediate “lifeline funding” is made available.

Aid agencies are seeking up to US$2 billion to assist millions of people through the end of the year, including COVID-19 activities.

More information is available in the updated Global Humanitarian Response Plan for COVID-19.