The Coalition of Civilian Forces in Eastern Sudan has condemned the way the de facto military authorities are dealing with a worsening cholera epidemic, as well as malaria and dengue fever in El Gedaref state. UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) have confirmed 65 deaths from cholera, including children, out of 1,310 cases in four states in Sudan. They warn that more than 10,000 children will die by the end of this year as a result of further attacks and disruptions to health and nutrition services in Sudan.
“We received official reports of 600 cases of cholera inflections including 30 of deaths, and 1,900 cases of dengue fever with 22 deaths,” Salih Ammar, spokesperson for the Coalition of Eastern Sudan Civilian Forces told Radio Dabanga. “The information we received from reliable sources in El Gedaref confirms that the actual numbers of deaths and infections are higher than reported, as most cases are not recorded by health agencies, whose capacity is limited.”
The coalition spokesperson reiterated an appeal to international organisations for urgent intervention, and call on all societal forces to pressure the military authorities to fulfil their duties in preserving the lives of civilians.
Ammar also expressed our concern about indications of the situation worsening in the neighbouring state of Kassala, “whose health system is also collapsing and cannot bear higher infection rates”.
The Director of the Health Emergency and Epidemic Control Department in En Nehoud in West Kordofan, Abeer Bashir, reported six confirmed cases of dengue fever, with 17 other suspected cases spread across different health centres in the area over the past week.
Abdelrahman El Hasan, Director of Health Affairs in En Nehoud, confirmed the presence of four suspected positive dengue fever cases in the locality.
UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) have confirmed 65 deaths from cholera, including children, out of 1,310 cases in four states in Sudan.
In a joint statement, the two organisations said that health authorities in Sudan have already reported 4,296 suspected cases of measles, 108 deaths, 4,307 suspected dengue fever cases and 16 deaths, and more than 710,000 clinical malaria cases with 27 deaths.
UNICEF and WHO: ‘More than 10,000 children will die by the end of this year as a result of disruptions to health and nutrition services in Sudan…’
The two organizations expressed grave concern about the spread of cholera, measles, malaria, and dengue fever across the country, posing deadly risks to malnourished children.
UNICEF and the WHO have warned that “more than 10,000 children will die by the end of this year as a result of further attacks and disruptions to health and nutrition services in Sudan”.
The two groups said in a joint statement that the six-month conflict in Sudan puts the lives of millions of children at risk of cholera, dengue, measles, malaria, and other diseases, noting that organisations face increasing challenges due to safety and security constraints, access, and resources.
The statement warned agencies that further disruption of the health system would lead to large numbers of preventable deaths among children and vulnerable populations.
UNICEF and the WHO point out that about 70 per cent of hospitals in conflict-affected areas are not functioning, the statement said. WHO has verified 58 attacks on healthcare facilities so far, resulting in 31 deaths and 38 injuries among health workers and patients.
The statement noted that the rainy season creates a favourable space for the spread of waterborne and vector diseases. He noted that the high risk of death due to obstetric complications, low vaccination, disease outbreaks and malnutrition is increasing rapidly.
‘The impact on children is unacceptable’ – Mandeep O’Brien, UNICEF Sudan
About 700,000 children suffer from severe acute malnutrition, and 100,000 children need life-saving treatment for acute malnutrition with medical complications. “Maternal, new-born, and infant health and nutrition services – a lifeline in a country where nearly 14 million children need urgent humanitarian support – have been destroyed in some areas,” said Mandeep O’Brien, UNICEF representative in Sudan. “Health workers haven’t been paid for months. Supplies are exhausted. Critical infrastructure continues to be attacked.”
He called for an immediate cessation of hostilities, but the impact on children is unacceptable, and health partners urgently need access to resources to help Sudan.
The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has facilitated the arrival of 44 truckloads of relief supplies to Kordofan and Darfur, after the movement of supplies was delayed for six consecutive weeks due to insecurity.
UN Deputy Spokesperson Farhan Haq told a news conference in New York that the convoy was carrying supplies from UNHCR, the World Food Programme, and UNICEF.
As reported today by Radio Dabanga, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) announced the suspension of its support of surgical operations at Bashair Teaching Hospital in southern Khartoum, due to a critical shortage of necessary supplies that has persisted for a month.