UN cautions against COVID-19 presence in Yemen

UN cautions against COVID-19 presence in Yemen

Alsahwa Net-The United Nations (UN) warned on Tuesday against the presence and the possible for the rapid outbreak of the COVID-19 in Yemen.

“There is now a very real probability that the virus has been circulating undetected and unmitigated within communities,” a statement by the UN said.

“Aid agencies are deeply concerned by the presence, and the potential for the rapid spread of coronavirus in Yemen,” the statement said.

“To date, Yemen has been an outlier in the Eastern Mediterranean region with a single laboratory confirmed case of COVID-19 declared on 10 April in Hadhramaut,” the statement indicated.

It quoted the Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen, Lise Grande saying “Since the first confirmed COVID case, we have warned that the virus is now in Yemen and may quickly spread”.

She said that factors for the infection spread exist in Yemen including “low levels of general immunity, high levels of acute vulnerability and a fragile and overwhelmed health system.”

The statement explained that based on the transmission patterns of the virus in other countries, and the passing of seventeen days since the first case declaration, agencies are warning there is now a very real probability that the virus has been circulating undetected and unmitigated within communities.

It indicated that this increases the likelihood of a surge of cases which may quickly overwhelm health capacities.

“There’s no time to lose. People have to be informed accurately and quickly about what is happening so they can do what’s necessary to protect themselves and their families,” Grande said.

The statement quoted the World Health Organization (WHO) Representative in Yemen, Altaf Musani saying “The record is clear,”.

“In countries where people are aware and warned, and where there is testing, tracing and isolation measures, transmission of the virus has been interrupted,” Musani said.

In line with the International Health Regulations (article 6), announcing and managing any potential threat to global health security, including disease, is the responsibility of national authorities.

It affirmed that” the UN and its front-line partners continue to advocate for necessary steps, provide guidance, and coordinate with and support health authorities to suppress transmission, prepare and equip COVID-specific hospitals and isolation units, secure supplies, identify and treat people with the virus and inform the public about the virus and how communities can protect themselves.”

It said that “Health partners require hundreds of millions of US dollars for COVID-19 programs.”

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