More than 5.2 million people in Tigray region, Ethiopia, are in dire need of humanitarian support, including health care, due to the conflict that erupted at the end of 2020, which has left thousands injured and traumatized and had a severe impact on the families’ lives and livelihoods. A total of 2 million people has been displaced and are living in crowded settings with limited access to water and sanitation infrastructure.
Over half of the health facilities in the region are not operational. People are suffering from trauma and injuries, food insecurity and malnutrition, sexual and gender-based violence, and communicable diseases such as malaria, cholera and other diseases, as well as reduced access to treatment of non-communicable diseases and maternal and child health services. The conflict has also disrupted the COVID-19 response. Millions of people are facing acute food insecurity in the region, with over 350 000 people close to famine. Access to affected areas remains extremely limited, making the scale-up of the health response even more difficult even as the population’s needs are growing, especially for children, women, and internally displaced persons.
As Global Health Cluster lead, WHO is coordinating with 23 partners in Tigray and neighboring areas to provide the affected populations with emergency health response, including on prevention, preparedness and response to disease outbreaks, both by providing supplies to health facilities, and also through mobile health teams.