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Source: World Health Organization (WHO)
25 April 1988
WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATIONA41/INF.DOC./5

25 April 1988


FORTY-FIRST WORLD HEALTH ASSEMBLY

Provisional agenda item 33


HEALTH CONDITIONS OF THE ARAB POPULATION IN THE OCCUPIED ARAB
TERRITORIES, INCLUDING PALESTINE


The Director-General has the honor to bring to the attention Of the Health Assembly the annual report of the Director of Health of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) for the year 1987, which is annexed hereto.








ANNEX

ANNUAL REPORT OF THE DIRECTOR OF HEALTH
OF UNRWA FOR THE YEAR 1987

CONTENTS
    Page
Chapter I

Chapter II

Chapter III

Chapter IV

Chapter V

Chapter VI

Chapter VII

Appendix
Introduction ..................................................

General management ............................................

Curative medical care services ................................

Preventive medical care services ..............................

Nursing services ..............................................

Environmental health services .................................

Nutrition and supplementary feeding services ..................

Statistical data and illustrations ............................
    2

    4

    11

    15

    20

    22

    25

    28


CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

Population

1. Overall the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) is caring for approximately 2 230 000 registered refugees as at 31 December 1987 of whom more than one-third live in camps, while the rest live in cities, towns or village communities. The registered refugee population is distributed as follows: Lebanon 280 000, Syrian Arab Republic 260 000, Jordan 860 000, the West Bank 380 000 and the Gaza Strip 450 000. In the five geographical areas or territories called "fields of operation" about 2 000 000 refugees are eligible for health care services.

Health status

2. The overall crude birth rate of the refugee population is estimated at 30 per thousand. However, the rates vary from one field of operation to another and are higher among camp population than among population living outside camps. In a recent study carried out by the WHO collaborating centre in Gaza, the crude birth rate both for refugee and non-refugee population in 1987 was estimated at 40 per thousand.

3. The average family size, Agency-wide was estimated at six persons, with a male to female ratio of 51:49. The annual rate of population increase is estimated at 2.8%. Studies conducted over the last two decades in four of UNRWA's five fields of operation revealed a steadily decreasing trend in infant mortality and that the refugee communities have already passed the target of 50 deaths per thousand live births set out by the World Health Organization for developing countries by the turn of the century; the rates range from 30-40 per thousand live births, with no significant sex variations. Coupled with the significant drop in rates, the pattern showed continuous decreasing mortality from infectious diseases and increasing mortality from maternal and congenital causes, which
are even more difficult to prevent.

4. Data collected from the risk approach research/intervention strategy applied in the West Bank field of operation revealed that 10% of pregnant women registered at UNRWA maternal and child care clinics are at high risk and that 12% are at moderate risk, with
corresponding risk pattern among neonates.

UNRWA Primary health care programme

5. The UNRWA health care programme, which is basically community health-oriented, provides primary health care to the eligible refugee population, comprising medical care services (both preventive and curative), environmental health services in camps and nutrition and supplementary feeding to vulnerable population groups. The level of service responds to the needs of the refugees which in turn reflect: their resistance. Camp residents use UNRWA facilities because of ease of access; other refugees living in towns or remote villages at a distance from the nearest Agency health centre tend to share local community facilities whether private, voluntary or public health.

Overall health Policy

6. UNRWA's policy is to maintain preventive and curative health services for eligible Palestine refugees consistent with the humanitarian policies of the United Nations and the basic principles and concepts of the World Health Organization and with the development and progress achieved in the public and medical care provided by each host government to its indigenous population at public expense. The prime objective of the Agency's health programme is to promote the health of refugees and meet their basic health needs.

Coordination/cooperation

7. The UNRWA health service is mightily reinforced by cooperation from several major sources. Within the United Nations family there is major support which reaches its highest expression from WHO and UNICEF. Since 1950, under the terms of an agreement with UNRWA, the World Health Organization has provided technical supervision for the programme, by assigning WHO staff members to UNRWA headquarters on non-reimbursable loan; currently there are six, including the Agency's Director of Health. The latter, as WHO representative, is responsible on behalf of the WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, for advising the UNRWA Commissioner-General on all health matters and for the implementation of WHO's policies as they apply to the Agency.

8. With UNICEF, the long-standing association has been heightened over the period under review, as many of the policy objectives are common and so allow effective integrated work. Some new incentives have been possible by the ready liaison with the UNICEF Regional Director.

9. Complementary to individual activities several non-governmental organizations are a ready source of advice and assistance in areas of common interest.

10. Finally, but by no means least, acknowledgement is readily made of the important support and cooperation of the host governments. In many areas these authorities render direct assistance to the Palestine refugees, while in others there is valued coordination and integration of services.

Situation in Lebanon

11. While the report covers all five "fields of operation", with their individuality and problems peculiar to each, it is necessary to emphasize the continuing serious problems in Lebanon. Here the health of refugees is seriously imperiled as they continue to be subject to serious adverse social pathology. Recurrently their existence continues to be threatened, their family life disrupted and their food and housing restricted, and they are enmeshed in a situation fraught with danger and uncertainty.

12. All possible efforts were exerted to maintain the smooth running of the operation. However, in many instances the services were interrupted or completely paralyzed due to the siege imposed on camps, limitations on movement of staff, refugees and supplies, or inaccessibility to UNRWA facilities.

13. As part of the emergency measures authorized by the UNRWA Commissioner-General, medical care services were extended to registered refugees who are not normally eligible.

Situation in the occupied territories

14. The state of unrest which prevailed in the occupied territories of the West Bank and Gaza fields of operation as from December 1987 presented additional challenges to the UNRWA primary health care programme. The number of casualties increased. General clinics, school health, environmental health and supplementary feeding services were disrupted in many camps due to curfew measures, or limitation on movement of staff, refugees and supplies. UNRWA responded to this situation by implementing extraordinary measures to meet the immediate needs for emergency medical care, first-aid supplies, nutritional support and other necessary relief assistance.

15. The actual needs far exceed immediate relief measures. Much is still desired to improve camp infrastructure but, even then, the final solution to the problem lies in implementing the United Nations resolutions.


CHAPTER II

GENERAL MANAGEMENT

Organization

16. The Director of Health is responsible to the Commissioner-General of UNRWA for the planning, implementation, supervision and evaluation of the health and supplementary feeding programmes within the budgetary limits approved by the Commissioner-General. He is assisted in this task by a staff of professional and auxiliary health workers and manual workers, totaling 2964 as at 31 December 1987.

17. Since 1950, under the terms of an agreement with UNRWA, the World Health Organization has provided technical supervision of the Agency's health care programmes by assigning WHO staff members to UNRWA headquarters on non-reimbursable loan, currently six including the Agency's Director of Health. The latter as WHO representative, is responsible on behalf of the WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean for advising the UNRWA Commissioner-General on all health matters and for the implementation of WHO's policies as they apply to the Agency. Since 1978, the Department of Health's headquarters has been split between Vienna and Amman. To attempt to achieve the necessary integrated team approach regular visits and meetings are made to Vienna and Amman.

18. The Department has five divisions: curative medicine, preventive medicine, nursing, environmental health and nutrition. The Curative Medicine Division includes the Pharmaceutical and Medical Supply Branch and the Preventive Medicine Division includes
the Health Education Branch.

19. This organizational pattern is repeated in each of the five field health offices located in Jordan, the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, Lebanon and the Syrian Arab Republic, which have departmental status within the field offices. In each case, the field health officer reports directly to the field office director for administrative purposes and to the Director of Health on technical matters.

20. The Department of Health continues to attach great importance to team work, coordinated staff planning and consultation in the development of health projects and the evaluation of health programmes. To this end, regular meetings of the senior health staff are held at headquarters and in the fields of operation, the more important of which are the weekly staff meetings, the divisional meetings at headquarters and the annual or biennial conferences of the senior field health staff.

Direction - supervision

21. The director and chiefs of each division and branch undertook regular periodic visits to each field of operation to review the work of the Department and ensure that it reflects the approved policy and standards of the Agency.

22. The whole activity is reinforced by major Technical Instructions issued by the Director of Health.

23. The supervision at field level is undertaken by the field health officer and his senior colleagues.

Planning and programming

24. Prior to 1986, detailed reviews of each sub-programme were undertaken, leading to firm activity decisions. Throughout each year these decisions, with their related resource provisions, were regularly monitored.

25. The first comprehensive three-year medium-term plan for the period 1987-1989 was prepared, with the main purpose of developing an overall framework for the progressive development and management of the programmes carried out by the Agency during the period. The plan formed the basis for establishing policy and programme guidelines for the annual budgets and for projection of the medium-term financial requirements.

Budget and finance

26. With the exception of the cost of international staff paid by the United Nations, UNESCO and WHO, UNRWA's budget is financed almost entirely from voluntary contributions in cash and in kind, mainly from governments, and the remainder from non-governmental and miscellaneous sources.

27. Each year, budget preparation guidelines and budget norms are forwarded to the fields of operation for preparation of budget estimates which are reviewed by UNRWA headquarters, and budget allotments are authorized under each sub-programme based on the approved policies for the new budget cycle.

28. Health services in 1987 accounted for US$ 38 775 000, or 19% of the total UNRWA budget as follows:

Health budget, 1987
(in thousands of US dollars)

CashIn kindTotal
% of UNRWA
Budget
A.General Fund
Medical care services

Environmental health
18 930

6 022
400

533
19 330

6 555
Sub-total24 952 93325 885
    14.5
B.Ongoing activities
Nutrition and supplementary feeding 4 248 6 15810 406
    75.8
C.Project Fund 2 427 0 2 427
    24.2
Grand Total (A + B + C)31 627 7 09138 718
    19.0



Health manpower development

29. The Agency maintained and further developed its programme of education and training in the field of health. Basic professional and vocational training is primarily the responsibility of the Department of Education, while in-service and postgraduate training is the direct concern of the Department of Health.

Basic Professional education

30. The assistance provided for medical students includes maintenance grants, payment of tuition fees and an allowance to cover the cost of books, training material, instruments and other essential items. Young men and women have been encouraged to enroll in medical, dentistry and nursing education courses at schools of nursing and at universities. Scholarships for nursing education were donated by voluntary agencies.

Vocational training

31. At its vocational training institutions the Agency provides paramedical courses to enable refugee students to become assistant pharmacists, laboratory technicians, public health inspectors, physiotherapy technicians and dental assistants. On completion of their training, graduates may join the Agency's service or be assisted by the UNRWA Placement Office to find employment in the region.

In-service training

32. Continuing education was carried out by the Department of Health for its own staff in the various aspects of the programme, in accordance with the identified training needs and priorities for each UNRWA field of operations. The objectives of continuing education of the health workers were to update the knowledge of those who acquired their basic training a long time ago, to change the attitude and develop the knowledge and skills of all staff, and make them conversant with the global objective of achieving health for all by the year 2000 and the modern strategies and approaches for its realization. The continuing education activities also aimed at orienting the newly appointed, transferred or promoted personnel or bridging some of the gaps that might have existed in their basic training in relation to the actual requirements of the practical field work of UNRWA which is basically primary health care oriented.

33. A large number of health personnel, including medical, dental, nursing, sanitation, administrative and paramedical staff, attended training courses, workshops, seminars and conferences of various duration ranging from one day to three months.

34. The areas of training covered a wide range of primary health care activities, comprising medical care, oral health, communicable and non-communicable disease control, the risk approach in maternal and child care, community health nursing, health education, environmental health, laboratory techniques and management.

35. These training activities were conducted by UNRWA staff or were arranged in coordination with WHO collaborating centres, local hospitals, universities, professional associations and non-governmental organizations.

36. Inter-field training activities included two workshops, on the control and management of diarrhoeal diseases and on orientation for the community health nursing programme.

37. The workshop on diarrhoeal diseases was conducted in coordination with a WHO collaborating centre and the Jordanian Ministry of Health. Twelve medical officers and twelve qualified nurses from the five UNRWA fields of operation attended this workshop.

38. The orientation workshop on community health nursing was conducted in collaboration with the Save the Children Fund, United Kingdom, and was attended by seventeen qualified nurses at the supervisory and delivery levels from the five fields of operation.

Postgraduate training

39. Through the sustained support of the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean and collaboration with non-governmental organizations, the UNRWA Department of Health maintained an active postgraduate training programme aiming at developing the technical and managerial skills of its staff and meeting future replacement needs.

WHO fellowships

40. The following WHO-sponsored fellowships were started or completed during the year:

Fellowships awarded by non-governmental organizations

41. The following were granted during the year:

UNRWA Department of Health as a resource for the training of others

42. The UNRWA Department of Health made its facilities and programmes available to students and trainees of certain teaching and service institutions in the area for practical field experience, particularly in the nursing and paramedical fields.

Research and evaluation

43. Health services research and evaluation aiming at assessing programme deficiencies and improving operational activity were carried out through internal reviews, joint planning missions or WHO short-term consultants. The planned activities in this respect covered the following initiatives:

Assessment of laboratory, dispensary and dental facilities

44. At the request of the Director of Health, the Advisory Medical Officer, headquarters, Amman, carried out a general assessment of UNRWA laboratory, dispensary and dental care facilities in Jordan, the Syrian Arab Republic, Gaza and the West Bank and raised his findings for further review and necessary corrective measures. This assessment will be followed by a patient-flow analysis to assess current problems at the delivery level and introduce new methods for increasing operational efficiency.

WHO/UNRWA Planning mission on operational research

45. Dr B. MacCarthy, Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta and Dr R. Guidotti were assigned as WHO short-term consultants to develop a plan of action for operational research using the team problem-solving approach regarding managerial problems of primary concern to both the West Bank and Gaza fields of operation. Some of the health services research activities recommended by the planning mission started. Other activities requiring further training in the use of minicomputer facilities will be developed in coordination with WHO.

Assessment of UNRWA diabetes clinics

46. Dr Z. Skrabalo was assigned as a WHO short-term consultant on diabetes mellitus. He carried out a thorough review of the operation of UNRWA special care clinics in four fields of operation and recommended the establishment of close coordination with the WHO collaborating centre at the Institute for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases, Zagreb for the development of a new intervention strategy based on active surveillance, improved laboratory facilities, staff training and patient education. A plan of action was developed during the field health officers' meeting which was held for this purpose in Yugoslavia.

47. A helping team from the Zagreb Institute will visit UNRWA fields of operation during 1988 to assist in developing an appropriate surveillance/education/intervention strategy for the control of diabetes, which will serve as a model for developing essential non-communicable disease control strategies.

Mental health

48. Dr N. Wig, Regional Adviser, Mental Health, WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean, visited Jordan in January 1987 to review mental health problems in the light of earlier reviews/consultations conducted in coordination with WHO and UNICEF. The Regional Adviser arranged for the attendance of one senior medical officer from the Jordan field of operation at a workshop on mental health in Pakistan during March 1987 and recommended a workshop for staff with a short-term consultant. This recommendation, together with the future development of a multidisciplinary approach to address the mental and psychological needs of refugee children, were discussed with the Regional Director, WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean during a session of the WHO Executive Board and it is hoped that progress will take place during 1988.

WHO short-term consultant on water salinity, Gaza

49. Mr Janasson was assigned as a WHO short-term consultant on environmental health in Gaza with special emphasis on the problem of water salinity. He visited Gaza in December 1987 to study the problem and recommend remedial action.

WHO short-term consultant on measles

50. Dr N. Tawil was assigned as a WHO short-term consultant to investigate a measles outbreak which took place early in 1987. He carried out further analysis of available data and made some recommendations.

African/Eastern Mediterranean workshop on maternal health research

51. Dr I. Rayyes, Field Preventive Medicine Officer, Gaza attended the workshop on maternal health research held in Alexandria from 1 to 5 November 1987.

Association with the Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta

52. Through the sustained support of the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean the association with the Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, has been further reinforced by visits of chiefs of divisions to the Centers for training in the use of minicomputer facilities and development of health services research projects relevant to the various components of UNRWA's primary health care programme.

Conferences

53. Several meetings/conferences of the Department of Health senior staff were held strengthen technical coordination between the two headquarters units, in Vienna and Amman, and the fields of operation. These comprised: the field health officers meeting which was held in Vienna from 16 to 18 February 1987, the field preventive medicine officers meeting, held in Larnaca, Cyprus from 22 to 24 April 1987, the chiefs of divisions meeting held in Vienna from 29 June to 1 July 1987, and the special field health officers meeting held in Yugoslavia from 20 to 24 October 1987 in coordination with the Institute of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases, Zagreb.

54. The association with the World Health Organization was maintained through regular contacts, attendance of the Director of Health and chiefs of divisions at WHO conferences/meetings and through exchanges of visits of senior UNRWA staff to WHO headquarters, Geneva and the WHO Regional Office, Alexandria, and visits of the WHO Regional Director and Regional Advisers to UNRWA headquarters in Vienna and Amman, and to the UNRWA fields of operation.

55. During the year the Director of Health and chiefs of divisions participated in the following WHO meetings/conferences:


CHAPTER III

CURATIVE MEDICAL CARE SERVICES

General

56. UNRWA provides curative medical care services to about 1.96 million Palestine refugees and to locally recruited staff members and their authorized dependants.

57. The services comprise out-patient medical care, in-patient medical care, dental care, rehabilitation of physically disabled children, essential support services such as laboratory and radiological services, specialist and special care services and the provision of medical supplies.

Mode of operation

58. Out-patient medical care is provided through UNRWA’s infrastructure of health centres/points established in and outside camps. The services are provided by locally recruited staff and comprise a wide range of clinical facilities integrated within a primary health care approach (for details see Appendix, Table 2).

59. This basic infrastructure of clinical facilities is supported by secondary medical care facilities provided mainly through contractual arrangements comprising specialist out-patient care, in-patient medical care, specialized laboratory investigations, radiological services and physical rehabilitation of crippled children.

Policy

60. The Agency's policy is to provide basic curative medical care services, free of charge, to eligible Palestine refugees and to locally recruited staff members and their dependants who are not participating in Agency-sponsored insurance schemes.

61. The three levels of primary, secondary and tertiary care are provided along the following approaches:

Objectives

62. To reduce morbidity, disability and premature mortality from communicable diseases by developing and maintaining appropriate surveillance/intervention strategies based on medical technology.

63. Enhancing the ability of individuals, families and at-risk groups to develop to their full health potential, by assuming responsibility for their own health, avoiding self-inflicted damaging behavior and fostering life-styles conducive to health.

Achievements

Out-patient medical care

64. Analysis of data collected from the five fields of operation revealed that the overall utilization rate of UNRWA out-patient clinics during 1987 was 76%. In general, the demand for out-patient medical care services was on the increase in all fields of operation owing to the expansion/improvement of UNRWA facilities, the increased cost of medical care in the area of operation and the rapid increase in cost of living in all fields of operation. This utilization rate could have been much higher had it not been offset by the limitations imposed on movement of refugees and inaccessibility to UNRWA medical care facilities. This was mainly encountered in Lebanon, where four health centres in the central Lebanon, Saida and Tyre areas could not operate during the year and the services were interrupted or seriously affected at intervals in many centres owing to siege, fighting, tension and air raids.

65. In Gaza and the West Bank the services were also disrupted on many occasions owing to curfew measures and unrest.

66. The projects for replacement of inferior health premises and extension of health facilities were very successful.

67. In Jordan a new health centre was constructed and taken over at Baqa'a camp and work is nearing completion for the construction of a new health centre at Marka camp. Also, work started for the construction of a cool store at the field pharmacy, Amman. All these projects were funded by contributions from the Government of Canada.

68. In addition, plans are under way for the construction of a new health centre at Jarash camp with a contribution from the Danish Refugee Council.

69. Also, the necessary funds were allocated from the UNRWA budget for extension of the health centres in Jabal el-Hussein and Zarqa camps.

70. In the West Bank the projects for extension of the Amari and Askar camp health centres were funded by contributions from the Government of Canada.

71. In Gaza the Government of Finland contributed the necessary funds for construction of a new health centre in Gaza town to replace the old rented premises, and in the Syrian Arab Republic field of operation, UNRWA allocated the necessary funds for construction of a combined health centre/feeding point in Muzereib.

72. Additional medical, nursing, other professional and support staff posts were established to reduce workload at health centre level and to implement new activities/ approaches in primary health care.

73. Significant improvement of medical equipment was made possible from the UNRWA budget and from generous donations, including a special grant from OPEC for upgrading diagnostic and treatment equipment in the Gaza and West Bank fields of operation.

74. Specialists and special care clinics were further expanded by the establishment of a respiratory diseases clinic at Rimal health centre, procurement of equipment for the establishment of two eye disease clinics at Rimal and Khan Younis health centres in Gaza, and the establishment of cardiovascular, ophthalmology, dermatology and ear, nose and throat clinics at Baqa'a camp, Jordan field of operation.

75. The improvements brought the number of clinics operating in 1987 to 14 specialist clinics supported by 40 specialized clinics for diabetes care.

In-patient medical care

76. In all fields of operation, UNRWA maintained its hospitalization schemes at private subsidized hospitals by meeting the additional cost of service.

77. Also the agreement concluded with Al-Ahli Arab Hospital, Gaza and Augusta Victoria Hospital, West Bank were revised for the wider provision of beds. In this respect arrangements were made for increasing the number of beds subsidized at Al-Ahli Arab Hospital from 35 to 40 beds and providing an additional four ear, nose and throat beds at Augusta Victoria Hospital effective 1 January 1988.

78. The Agency was also successful in seeking funds for upgrading-the standard of facilities and equipment at subsidized hospitals in Jerusalem. In this regard the Swedish Government contributed US$ 400 000 towards major renovation/extension works at Augusta Victoria Hospital, OPEC contributed US$ 180 000 towards the cost of cardiological equipment, and UNRWA covered the cost of equipment for the newly established ear, nose and throat unit at this hospital. Another contribution was made by the International Development and Refugee Foundation, Canada to upgrade the medical equipment at St. John's Ophthalmic Hospital, Jerusalem.

79. In the West Bank, where the Agency operates a 36-bed hospital in Qalqilia, the project for establishment of a new surgical ward has been started. A provision was made by the local municipality to cover construction costs, another donation of J.Din 50 000 was received for the purchase of essential equipment and surgical instruments and the Ministry of Occupied Territories Affairs, Jordan pledged J.Din 40 000 per year to cover the operating costs of this unit during the first five years.

80. In the Gaza and Jordan fields of operation, where a wider provision of beds is still needed, the Agency maintained schemes for reimbursement of the costs of hospitalization to special hardship cases and other refugees in need.

81. UNRWA continued to meet part of the specialized emergency life-saving treatment, mainly for cardiac patients and neuro-surgery. Seventy-one patients from the five fields of operation benefited from this fund during the year.

Oral health

82. Major developments in the Agency's oral health programme were attained by the establishment of additional dental teams, the provision of capital equipment, the standardization of supplies and the appointment of dental hygienists/assistants.

83. The above improvements were further reinforced by the donation of dental units, including three units donated by a Palestinian businessman, two for the West Bank and one for Gaza; one unit for Arroub Health Centre, West Bank donated by an UNRWA dental surgeon; two dental units, including one mobile unit, donated by the Near East Council of Churches for the Amman polyclinic and Jordan valley health points; one dental unit for Jarash health centre, Jordan donated by the Canadian Embassy; and another one for Husn health centre donated by the British Embassy.

84. These major developments provided the necessary infrastructure needed for introducing a new oral health strategy based on wider coverage and the at-risk approach, directed towards schoolchildren, pregnant women and nursing mothers. This strategy was further reinforced by carrying out oral health surveys, active surveillance and health education activities.

Laboratory services

85. In line with the established Agency policy to expand clinical laboratories, two additional primary health care laboratories were established, one each in the Syrian Arab Republic and Lebanon fields of operation. In total, three central and 30 clinical laboratories attached to large health centres were operating during the year. UNRWA also maintained contractual arrangements with seven private laboratories for the performance of elaborate laboratory tests of clinical and public health importance.

Radiological services

86. The concept of providing necessary referral facilities to support primary health care continued to be maintained through Basic Radiological System (BRS) machines installed at Baqa'a camp, Jordan and Rimal health centre, Gaza. These two units were made possible through the generosity of the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean.

87. Two additional units will be installed at Amari camp and Hebron town health centres, West Bank, one donated by the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean and one by OPEC.

88. In addition, X-ray services are provided at subsidized hospitals or through contractual arrangements.

Rehabilitation of Physically handicapped children

89. The facilities available for management of disability among the refugee population are still modest. Greater emphasis is placed on programmes aiming at prevention of disability among the vulnerable groups.

90. Crippled children received treatment as either out- or in-patients at physical rehabilitation centres. During the year, 519 children benefited from this service in the West Bank, Gaza and Syrian Arab Republic fields of operation. In the Jordan field of operation crippled children received similar care at the government rehabilitation centre in Amman.

91. UNRWA also provided financial support towards the cost of prosthetic devices such as eye glasses, hearing aids and orthopedic devices recommended on medical grounds for schoolchildren and others who suffer functional impairment and disability.

Medical supplies

92. Essential medical supplies and equipment programmed by the Department of Health continued to be purchased on the international market and through UNICEF. Vaccines and cold chain supplies for the Expanded Programme on Immunization continued to be met through the sustained support of UNICEF.

93. Occasional shortages were met from the Director of Health's Stock Reserve and through local purchases.

94. The value of medical supplies and equipment received as contributions to UNRWA health centres and subsidized hospitals amounted to US$ 697 878, while purchases during the year totaled US$ 2 208 291.

95. A general review of the medical supplies catalogue was carried out and additions and deletions were made in line with the WHO List of Essential Drugs. Also, reviews were made for the standardization of dental and laboratory equipment, instruments and supplies with the aim of increasing health care efficiency.


CHAPTER IV

PREVENTIVE MEDICAL CARE SERVICES

General

96. Preventive medical care services represent the core of UNRWA's primary health care programme. They comprise epidemiology and communicable diseases control, maternal and child care services, school health services and health education.

97. Increasing emphasis is being placed on the development of health preventive/promotive programmes directed towards non-communicable disease control, mental health and health care of the elderly.

Mode of operation

98. Preventive medical care services are provided to vulnerable population groups, including pregnant women, nursing mothers, infants and children up to the age of three years, and to pre-school children needing special care up to the age of five years.

99. These services are provided through the UNRWA infrastructure of maternal and child care clinics integrated within its network-of health centres/points or through maternal and child care sub-centres established in areas where the population does not have easy access to the main centres.

100. The maternal and child care services are complemented by preventive school health services for children aged six to 16 years and by other essential primary health care activities, including communicable disease control, nutritional support and health education.

101. This wide range of health preventive/promotive activities is provided in the following manner:

102. Besides offering early recognition and prompt treatment, health education and prevention measures are emphasized.

Health education

103. Health education activities are an integral part of the regular work of health staff at all levels. Supporting this is a health education branch, whose activities are geared both to assist colleagues and carry out additional health education work. A major advance in this programme has been the mobilization of teachers to give health education as part of their tuition. The teacher-pupil-parent approach, supported by school health committees, has already shown important results.

104. Health education material, produced by either UNRWA or UNICEF, is used for the health education activities.

Policy

105. The UNRWA policy is to provide, free of charge, preventive medical care services to the eligible Palestine refugee population, with special emphasis on vulnerable and at-risk groups. In realization of this overall health policy the specific policies described below are adopted.

Maternal care

106. The policy is to provide medical supervision/protection to pregnant women and nursing mothers through regular monitoring of those registered at its maternal and child care clinics as early as possible after establishment of the pregnancy status, throughout pregnancy, on delivery and during the lactation period.

107. The policy during delivery is to provide assistance to women in labor at maternity centres in camps where such facilities are available, to ensure safe delivery at home by trained midwives or supervised birth attendants and to refer women at high risk to subsidized hospitals, or where no provision of maternity beds at subsidized hospitals is available to provide financial assistance towards such care at government hospitals.

Child care

108. UNRWA policy is to provide medical care supervision/protection to infants and pre-school children through regular growth monitoring and immunization of those registered at its maternal and child care clinics as early as possible after birth up to three years of age, and to children aged three to five years who require special attention.

Family planning

109. The policy is to provide family planning services focused on health education to women registered at UNRWA maternal and child care clinics and to provide medical advice/assistance on the use of safe contraceptive techniques to women at risk, or on demand, with the objective of child-spacing not birth control. Coordination with local health authorities and full acceptance of the population are prerequisites for establishment/expansion of programs.

Communicable disease control

110. The policy is to protect the entire refugee population against communicable diseases through the Expanded Programme on Immunization, the management of diarrhoeal disease by oral re-hydration salts, and the maintenance of close surveillance of other communicable diseases in close coordination with the public health departments of the host governments.

School health

111. The policy is to provide services to schoolchildren in the elementary and preparatory schools and to students at UNRWA vocational and teacher training centres through medical examination at school entry, screening for handicapping conditions affecting performance at school, reinforcing immunization, and follow-up on morbidity conditions amenable to management.

Health education

112. The policy is to provide health education/health promotion activities to refugees attending UNRWA out-patient and maternal and child care clinics as an integral part of the regular work of all health staff, and to coordinate targeted activities directed towards improving life-styles of at-risk groups through the mobilization of teachers and other community organizations.

Objectives

113. The objectives of UNRWA's preventive medical care services are:

Achievements

Communicable disease prevention and control

114. With the exception of a severe outbreak of measles, which affected the refugee and the non-refugee population in the Gaza field of operations during the first six months of 1987, the Expanded Programme on Immunization target diseases were well under control. A total of 1236 cases of measles were reported during the outbreak, which included some previously vaccinated children.

115. No cases of diphtheria, poliomyelitis or tetanus (adult) were reported and only one case of tetanus neonatorum was reported from the Gaza field of operations. However, the incidence of tuberculosis showed a slight increase from three per 100 000 in 1986 to four per 100 000 in 1987, mainly as a result of improved reporting procedures.

116. No cases of malaria or cholera were reported during the year.

117. While the incidence of communicable diseases preventable by immunization continued to be well under control, the incidence of communicable diseases transmitted through environmental channels, including diarrhoeal diseases among children, dysentery, infectious hepatitis, enteric fevers and brucellosis, were on the increase. This has further emphasized the need for major improvements in camps' sanitation infrastructure to interrupt disease transmission.

118. In addition, there is evidence from mass screening surveys that head-lice and scabies have reached endemic levels among schoolchildren, which requires intensive health education campaigns.

Maternal care

119. More than 44 000 pregnant women were registered for antenatal care at UNRWA maternal and child care clinics. This represents an overall coverage of about 75% of the expected number of pregnant women based on a crude birth rate of 30 per thousand eligible population.

120. Out of all the deliveries reported in 1987, 13% took place at UNRWA maternity centres (where only 65 beds are available at eight camps in the Gaza and West Bank fields of operation); 59% took place at subsidized and government hospitals; and only 28% took place at home, attended by Agency-trained midwives or by traditional birth attendants.

121. An important achievement in the field of maternal and child health services in the West Bank has been the steady decline of overall infant mortality rates. From over 100 per thousand live births in the early 1960s to 83.7 per thousand in 1975, to 26 per thousand in 1986. The infant mortality rate in 1987 was 23.5 per thousand live births.

122. The post neonatal mortality rate showed the most dramatic reduction - from 59.7 per thousand live births in 1975 to 12.1 per thousand in 1987. The main reason for this significant reduction was the steady decrease in the number of infant deaths from gastroenteritis and respiratory diseases. Although diarrhoeal diseases in children up to three years of age continued to be reported from camps in relatively high number, gastroenteritis mortality rates were reduced from 27.9 per thousand live births in 1975 to the lowest level ever reached - 1.84 per thousand in 1987.

123. The introduction of oral re-hydration therapy in early 1980 has had a significant impact on reducing the number of deaths from diarrhoeal diseases and dehydration. Infant mortality from respiratory diseases has also been reduced, from 32.5 per thousand live births in 1975 to 3.5 per thousand in 1986; but it rises again to 8.1 per thousand in 1987. During 1987 respiratory diseases and gastroenteritis ranked as first and fifth respectively in order of frequency of the leading causes of all infant deaths. Respiratory diseases and congenital abnormalities have taken over and are the two leading causes of infant deaths in the West Bank.

Child care

124. A total of 125 000 children up to the age of three years were registered at UNRWA maternal and child care clinics for health supervision and immunization. This represents about 75% of the expected number of children in this age group, based on a crude birth rate of 30 per thousand and an infant mortality rate of 40 per thousand live births.

125. The utilization rate of the child care clinics, as measured by average regular attendance, is estimated at 92%.

126. The immunization coverage against the six Expanded Programme on Immunization target diseases was almost complete in all fields of operation.

127. In order to increase the coverage of maternal and child care services, a second mobile health team was established in the Gaza field of operations to serve the already existing six maternal and child care sub-centres. Accordingly, each maternal and child care sub-centre was in operation twice-weekly instead of one day a week. This achievement was made possible by the generosity of Radda Barnen which has funded the project since its inception. Further improvement is planned for 1988 by establishing a third team, upgrading the staffing pattern of these teams and replacing inferior maternal and child care sub-centre premises.

128. In the Jordan field of operations AGFUND funded the project for construction of two maternal and child care sub-centres at Baqa’a and Marks camps, and the Canadian International Development Agency pledged to construct a third maternal and child care sub-centre at Jabal el-Hussein camp.

129. In the West Bank two new maternal and child care centres were established at Dahrieh and Ramadin health points, and the Askar camp health centre premises were extended to facilitate the work of the maternal and child care clinic.

School health services

130. Three hundred and fifty thousand schoolchildren in 632 elementary and preparatory schools were under health supervision by school health teams and camp medical officers.

131. However, the programme was disrupted in the besieged camps in Lebanon throughout most of the year and it was interrupted on several occasions in other localities because of the inaccessibility of students, teachers and medical teams to schools.

132. In the occupied territories of Gaza and the West Bank the services were also interrupted in many camps during December.

133. In all fields of operation the screening of schoolchildren for dental problems and oral health education have been started as an established strategy, facilitated by the use of mobile dental clinics available in three fields of operation.

Health education

134. The main emphasis of the programme was directed towards fostering inter-sectoral collaboration and community participation in health education/health promotive activities.

135. Health education staff in all the fields of operation concentrated their efforts on activating camp health committees and school health committees to encourage the refugee population to assume responsibility for its own health and that of the community.

136. The health and family-life education programme for the three preparatory girls schools in Gaza was expanded to boys schools, through the sustained support of Radda Barnen.

137. Promotive activities in relation to environmental health were developed through a model project in Talbieh camp, Jordan. They proved to be very successful in increasing community awareness and active participation in reducing environmental health hazards and in the proper use of available facilities. A similar project for Qabr Essit camp in the Syrian Arab Republic field of operations has been developed in coordination with UNICEF.

138. More teachers were enrolled in the special teacher/tutor training courses aiming at enabling teachers to play an active role in the health education/promotion activities through the school health committees and the community at large.


CHAPTER V

NURSING SERVICES

General

139. The nurses of UNRWA provided basic and supportive medical services to refugees and displaced persons at 98 health centres/points, at all general maternal and child care specialist and specialized clinics, through school health programmes and mobile units, and through the community health nursing programme.

140. The Agency utilizes professionally qualified nurses to perform administrative, educational and supervisory functions, and practical nurses, midwives and traditional birth attendants to carry out the majority of nursing activities. There are also traditional birth attendants who receive their remuneration in the form of a fee for service, while the majority carry out domiciliary care and others assist with simple routine tasks at clinics.

Mode of operation

141. At headquarters level the Chief, Nursing Division is responsible, through the proper channels, for the organization, supervision and evaluation of the nursing programmes in the fields of operation, as well as for the planning and development of new nursing programmes.

142. At field level field nursing officers are responsible for the supervision and evaluation of the nursing programme in the fields of operation to which they are assigned. At area level area nursing officers (where such posts exist) supervise the nursing activities in their areas of assignment.

143. At health centre level qualified senior staff nurses coordinate, supervise and assist in the evaluation of all nursing activities, and carry out non-nursing responsibilities as well. They directly supervise auxiliary nursing and ancillary staff.

Policy

144. UNRWA policy is to provide quality nursing care services to Palestine refugees as an integral part of its primary health activities. A problem-solving approach, with community participation, is utilized.

Objectives

145. To identify individuals, families and community groups that are in need of health-care intervention, including the identification of high-risk persons or groups.

146. To plan nursing activities and interventions on the basis of identified health and health-related problems, community needs, UNRWA resources and acceptable standards of practice.

147. To promote health education activities at nursing-care level, through team efforts and community participation.

148. To implement and evaluate a community health nursing programme, utilizing a problem- solving approach, that assists families and communities in recognizing and coping with their health and health-related problems.

149. To promote community involvement in the community health nursing programme.

150. To implement regular orientation and in-service education programmes for UNRWA nurses.

151. To plan opportunities for higher education for qualified nurses.

Current activities

152. Nurses are responsible for carrying out direct nursing care activities in all health centres/points, maternity wards, maternal and child health clinics, school health programmes and the community.

Maternal and child health clinics

153. Maternal and child health services form the bulk of the work performed in the health centres and utilize all categories of nursing personnel to carry out prenatal, intrapartum and postpartum care, as well as home visits, for various reasons, to the pregnant or lactating mother.

154. The services for children provide monitoring of growth and development of all children up to the age of five years, immunization, referral to the physician of sick children, and referral to the appropriate place or person for special care or rehabilitation.

155. The education of mother and families for the purpose of improved health status is carried out on a regular basis.

Maternity wards

156. UNRWA-trained midwives care for women in labor and are responsible for these women delivering safely in the maternity wards available in two fields of operation and at home when called on to perform such a service. The postpartum period is monitored carefully with scheduled home visits according to planned activities.

Nutrition-rehabilitation centres

157. Nurses supervise the running of these centres and provide education for the mother so that she may utilize her own or UNRWA resources to provide adequate nourishment for her child.

Community health nursing programme

158. The community health nursing programme, which was started in the Jordan field of operation in 1983 has now been introduced in all fields of operation. Expansion of the programme to all camps will be carried out simultaneously, with additional staff provision and training.

159. The objectives of the programme are:

The end result would be improvement of the health status of individuals, families and the community.

160. Through the community health nursing programme, camps are divided into manageable areas, whereby one nurse is responsible for one designated area of the camp.

161. The nurse carries out the following tasks:

162. Many problems that are not brought to the clinic have been identified and thus a broader coverage of individuals and families has been provided.

Supportive activities

163. There is direct involvement by nurses in supportive activities, such as health education at all levels, identifying environmental health problems, school health programmes, and identifying persons at risk or in need of other services such as rehabilitative care, psychiatric assistance and special care for the deaf, blind or physically disabled.

164. Nurses are involved in surveys, studies and research activities performed by Agency staff and/or non-governmental organizations.


CHAPTER VI

ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH SERVICES

General

165. Environmental health services to 775 000 refugees residing in approximately 60 camps are being provided by UNRWA, in cooperation with the host governments, municipalities and other local bodies. The basic programme includes provision of potable water in quantity adequate to meet domestic needs, collection and disposal of refuse and liquid wastes, management of storm water, and control of insects and rodents of public health importance. Most of the improvement in the environmental health conditions of the refugee camps is being carried out either by the refugees themselves through Agency-assisted self-help programmes or by the host governments which continue to take a keen interest in the well-being of the refugees.

Mode of operation

166. Most of the services are being delivered by Agency-employed staff, who are gradually getting involved in health education activities in conformity with the well-accepted principles concerning primary health care. Modest equipment suited to local conditions and circumstances is provided to the workers for carrying out their normal duties but mechanization is being gradually expanded. As and when feasible, refuse removal and disposal are entrusted to municipalities or other private contractors through relatively long-term contractual arrangements.

Policy

167. The Agency endeavors to provide basic sanitation services to camp populations of a standard compatible with the quality of services generally provided by municipalities and local councils to towns and villages in the host countries. To enhance the effectiveness of the programme, community participation at all stages of development and problem-solving meetings at camp and area levels are encouraged.

168. UNRWA maintains an effective working relationship with municipalities and host governments for the solution of major problems which need joint action, e.g., the augmentation of water supplies, regional sewerage systems.

Objectives

169. The objectives of UNRWA's environmental health services are:

Achievements

Self-help projects

170. The Agency continued to lend support to the aided self-help camp-improvement schemes comprising the pavement of pathways, the construction of drains and the laying of sewers in localities that can be connected to an existing system. A number of camps in Jordan, the Syrian Arab Republic, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip benefited from the programme. In Lebanon, because of the continuing hostilities and the non-availability of building materials in reasonable quantity, progress of the self-help activities was hampered. Nevertheless, a plan of action has been worked out for 1988, the implementation of which will depend on the prevailing circumstances. In the meantime, very basic sanitary facilities are being provided to the clusters of refugees at their various temporary places of refuge.

Water supply

171. In Jordan the Government is providing indoor water taps to refugee shelters from the recently completed public water supply projects at Baqa'a, Talbieh, Suf, Jarash and Husn camps. The programme to provide all shelters with indoor water taps is likely to be completed by the end of 1988. In the West Bank private water connections have been provided to most of the shelters at Dheisheh and Deir-Ammar camps and arrangements are under way to provide indoor tap facilities also to all the shelters at Aqabat Jaber and Far's camps. An Agency-subsidized municipal water supply scheme for Sbeineh camp in the Syrian Arab Republic has been satisfactorily completed and, gradually, all shelters in the camp will be provided with indoor taps. A combined water and sewerage scheme, aiming at the provision of proper shelter connections, has been worked out by UNICEF for Qabr-Essit camp which is located within Damascus area. Two wells have already been drilled to augment the water supply. All shelters at Ein el-Hilweh camp in Lebanon have been provided with indoor taps.

Liquid waste disposal

172. Augmentation of the water supply in most of the camps has further emphasized the need for complementary sewerage facilities. Although the Agency continues its efforts to reduce the wastewater problem in each camp through self-help drainage schemes, the host governments are helping in finding some relatively long-term solutions.

173. In Jordan an underground sewerage scheme with a sewage treatment facility has been completed at Marka camp. Sewerage schemes for Baqa’a and Irbid camps are also nearing completion. The open drainage system at Talbieh camp is being converted into a covered system through the generous assistance of the Government of Jordan and with the participation of the refugees. Some note-worthy developments have taken place in the Gaza Strip where the flat terrain, the sand dunes, an increasing demand for water and depletion of the underground sources of water have created a number of problems, particularly complaints about increasing salinity in the water. UNDP has taken over the task of completing the sewerage and wastewater reclamation scheme for Gaza town. The scheme, which includes the utilization of treated sewage for irrigation thereby economizing on underground water, has been satisfactorily completed. A sewage pumping station is being built by the municipality to connect Beach camp with the town sewerage system project for Jabalia district, which would solve the long-standing problem of the disposal of wastewater-emanating from Jabalia camp. The United States Community Development Foundation, in cooperation with the municipality of Gaza and the Save the Children Fund, United Kingdom, has satisfactorily completed a sewerage scheme at Rafah which involved the installation of a permanent sewage pumping station and appropriate sewage treatment facility (an oxidation pond). Through the scheme, a properly designed terminal sewer has been made available which will lead to the execution of a self-help internal sewerage scheme for Rafah camp. A plan of action has already been worked out in this respect. In the West Bank, self-help underground sewerage schemes are planned for Jenin, Dheisheh and Amari camps and efforts are being made to obtain "specific purpose donations" to subsidize the cost of the planned work.

Refuge disposal

174. Refuse collection, removal and disposal facilities have been improved further through the cooperation of the municipalities. In the West Bank new contractual arrangements have been made with the municipalities concerned for the introduction of improved services for Balata camp, Nablus camp No. 1, and Askar, Kalandia and Jenin camps. Two additional fork-lift trucks and matching refuse containers have been deployed in the Gaza Strip to meet the workload at Rafah and Khan Younis camps and an additional two have been pledged by the Welfare Association, Geneva for the mechanization of garbage disposal at the remaining camps. Also, two skip-lift trucks with matching containers were purchased, one for Nablus area camps, West Bank and one for south Lebanon. To overcome the problem of shortage of refuse-burial sites in the Gaza Strip, the mechanical composting of refuse at two or three centralized locations is under active consideration by the local municipalities and councils.

Rodent and insect control

175. Chemical control of rats, mice and domestic flies has been carried out rather selectively and, as in previous years, attention is being focused mainly on the general cleanliness of the environment. Currently, Racumin is the rodenticide of choice for the modest rodent control activities in the Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon and West Bank fields of operation which are being carried out in cooperation with the municipalities. Owing to its cost-effectiveness Dimethoate continued to be used for fly-control operations, mainly during the peak season. However, residual pyrethroid 25% wettable powder (commonly known as Coopex) is also being used effectively in the Lebanon field of operation to take care of an abnormal situation. DDT proved to be the most effective insecticide for the control of sandflies in the Jericho area of the West Bank, where cutaneous leishmaniasis keeps resurging from time to time. The problem is contained through an ongoing leishmaniasis control programme carried out jointly by the public health department of the municipality of Jericho and UNRWA.

Health manpower development

176. To provide a boost to UNRWA's ongoing sanitation programme supportive schemes for manpower development and health education, a working relationship with the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Regional Centre for Environmental Health Activities, Amman has been established from which a breakthrough in the Agency's staff training and operational research programmes is expected. A civil engineer, on completion of his training in sanitary engineering at the University of Glasgow, has been assigned to the Lebanon field of operation. The only field left of operation without a fully qualified sanitary engineer is the Syrian Arab Republic. However, an experienced civil engineer has been appointed to manage the field sanitation division and a postgraduate training programme (on a WHO fellowship) is under consideration for the appointee.


CHAPTER VII

NUTRITION AND SUPPLEMENTARY FEEDING SERVICES

General

177. The programme provides nutritional support to vulnerable groups, namely, infants and pre-school children, pregnant women, nursing mothers and tuberculosis patients. Nutritional support is provided through:

Mode of operation

178. The midday meals or sandwiches are prepared in accordance with a menu issued every month and served at 92 supplementary feeding centres. A special diet (the post-diarrhea menu) is also made available to children suffering from diarrhea or malnutrition.

179. The distribution of the milk ration and the recording and reporting of issues are the responsibility of the staff of the supplementary feeding centres. As an alternative to the bagging of milk powder in the fields of operation the Agency has made arrangements with the suppliers in Europe to provide skimmed milk in one-kilo bags. The European Economic Community continued to underwrite the programme by contributions both in cash and in kind.

Rations to cases of special hardship

180. A standard monthly ration is provided through UNRWA distribution centres to special hardship cases identified by the Department of Relief Services. The ration provides a person with about 1900 calories and 61 grams of protein per day.

Dry rations to pregnant women, nursing mothers and tuberculosis patients

181. Dry rations are issued to eligible pregnant women and nursing mothers attending UNRWA maternal and child care clinics for health supervision and monitoring.

182. These rations are issued from the fifth month of pregnancy to one year after delivery. They provide a mother with additional nutritional support of approximately 1000 calories and 37 grams of protein per day.

183. Dry rations with the same calorie and protein values as those issued to special hardship cases are distributed to non-hospitalized tuberculosis patients.

Midday meal programme

184. Nutritionally balanced midday meals are offered six days a week at the Agency's supplementary feeding centres to children below six years of age and, on medical recommendation, to children aged six to 15 years.

185. The meals are prepared and distributed at the supplementary feeding centres and comprise both fresh and dry food which provide a child with approximately 500 calories and 20 grams of protein per meal.

Milk distribution

186. UNRWA distributes a monthly ration of whole and skimmed milk powder to eligible children aged six to 36 months and to non-breast-fed infants under six months of age attending the child health clinics. The ration for children aged six to 24 months provides 238 calories and 20 grams of protein per child per day whereas the ration for children aged 25-36 months provides 205 calories and 18 grams of protein per child per day.

Policy

187. The UNRWA policy is to provide, free of charge, midday meals/sandwiches, dry rations and dry milk to vulnerable groups or Palestine refugees eligible for UNRWA services.

Objectives

188. To prevent and correct nutritional deficiencies in the eligible refugee population.

189. To overcome protein/calorie deficiency among refugee children.

190. To prevent nutritional deficiencies and maintain the satisfactory nutritional status of pregnant and nursing women, non-hospitalized tuberculosis patients and cases selected on medical grounds.

191. To promote an understanding of nutrition in refugees through effective nutrition education.

Achievements

Midday meal programme

192. The average daily attendance for midday meals during the year was approximately 30 000. However, the programme was seriously affected during the camps' war in the Lebanon field of operation where three camps, viz. Burj el-Barajneh, Shatila and Rashidieh, were under siege, the feeding centres were destroyed or seriously damaged and the operation was completely disrupted. Also the programme was interrupted at intervals in several locations by fighting, air raids and restriction of the movement of staff, supplies and refugees. In various camps of the West Bank and Gaza fields of operation the programme was interrupted because of the state of unrest and the curfew measures imposed on the camps at different intervals, but more frequently since December 1987.

Emergency and extraordinary measures

193. In order to meet the immediate needs of vulnerable population groups, UNRWA established temporary or mobile feeding centres for the displaced refugees in central Lebanon, south and Tripoli area. Also the programme was extended to all registered refugees in Lebanon, including those who are not normally eligible for the programme.

194. UNRWA also sent food supplies into the besieged camps whenever permission to enter camps could be obtained. When finally UNRWA gained access to the camps the programme was reactivated at temporary feeding centres pending repair of the destroyed premises.

195. In the occupied territories of the West Bank and Gaza special extraordinary measures were implemented to meet the new needs that emerged as a result of the development that began in December 1987, including the extension of midday meals to children aged six to ten years and extension of dry ration and dry milk distribution to the refugee population not normally eligible for such services, including pregnant women, nursing mothers and children aged six to 36 months. Donations of baby food and other food supplies received through local contributions and government and non-governmental sources were also distributed to ameliorate the situation. These additional measures were implemented in the Gaza field of operation and to a certain extent in the West Bank.

Dry milk

196. Ninety-two thousand children approximately aged six to 36 months received milk rations during the year. However, the programme was also adversely affected by the conditions that prevailed in Lebanon, Gaza and the West Bank.

197. In view of the increased number of beneficiaries, without a corresponding increase in the size of the Swiss contribution of whole milk, the Agency was obliged to maintain the monthly issue of whole milk for the six to 24 month-old children at a reduced rate of 300 grams (instead of 500 grams) per child throughout the year. Skimmed milk distribution was interrupted occasionally because of shortage of supplies resulting from unforeseen delays in shipment.

Dry rations

198. A total of 34 000 pregnant women and nursing mothers received nutritional support through the dry ration distribution.

Nutrition surveillance, education and intervention programme

199. After thorough appraisal of the pilot project for reorientation of the nutrition and supplementary feeding programme, implemented on a trial basis since September 1986, the Commissioner-General decided to expand the programme to all camps.

200. The ultimate objective is to integrate the nutrition and supplementary feeding programme within the Agency's primary health care activities. This will be phased over a three-year period. It aims at identifying children with nutritional deficiencies or at risk of malnutrition, increasing population awareness of nutrition and implementing appropriate interventions relevant to the problems.


APPENDIX

STATISTICAL DATA 1987

Table 1. Health personnel in UNRWA
as at 31 December 1987

The following is the number of established posts at headquarters and in the fields of operation:
Head-
quarters
Jordan
West
Bank
GazaLebanon
Syrian
Arab Rep
Total
Doctors

Dentists

Pharmacists

Assistant pharmacists

Nurses

Midwives

Auxilliary nurses

Traditional midwives

Sanitation officers

Laboratory technicians

Health education staff

*other staff
6

0

1

0

1

0

0

0

1

0

1
41

8

1

22

25

4

93

26

2

10

6
27

5

1

21

28

7

76

22

2

7

4
28

5

1

17

30

33

60

0

1

9

5
27

4

1

19

23

11

47

0

2

4

4
25

5

1

17

21

2

51

0

2

8

4
154

27

6

96

128

57

327

48

10

38

24
Medical
Sanitation
Milk and supple-
mentary feeding
10
1

0
26
29

31
23
22

33
30
30

36
23
27

23
23
17

21
135
126

144
Labour category
Medical
Sanitation
Milk and supple-
mentary feeding
0
0

0
55
282

93
37
156

89
93
258

111
46
168

60
46
98

52
277
962

405
Total217545607474893932 964
* Comprises various categories of health auxiliaries and aides who mainly perform administrative, supervisory and clerical duties at camp level.


Table 2. Out-patient services

(a) Number of health units

Field of
operation
Health
centre/point
Dental clinics
Laboratories
Specialist
clinics
    Jordan
    West Bank
    Gaza
    Lebanon
    Syrian Arab Republic
16
32
9
20
21
12
9
6
5
7
9
7
6
4
7
8
1
1
3
1
    Total
98
39
33
14

(b) Number of attendances

Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
All fields
of operation
Medical consultations
First visit
Repeat visits
281 357
536 903
125 390
408 786
139 752
446 257
206 553
379 571
    114 159
    386 408
867 211
2 157 925
Sub-total818 260
534 176
586 009586 124
    500 567
3 025 136
Injections

Dressings

Eye treatment

Dental treatment
140 746

183 918

97 140

60 300
118 713

105 452

37 420

40 786
389 294

221 134

160 196

40 164
103 567

82 019

37 497

26 267
    97 617

    77 721

    6 941

    47 117
849 937

670 244

339 194

214 634

(c) Average number of attendances/1000 eligible population

Medical consultations
First visit
Repeat visits
531
1 013
545
1 777
600
1 915
1 194
2 194
554
1 876
632
1 572
Injections

Dressings

Eye treatment

Dental treatment
266

347

183

114
516

458

163

177
1 671

949

688

172
599

474

216

152
474

377

34

227
619

488

247

156

Table 3. In-patient (hospital) services

(a) Available facilities


Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Rep.
Total
1.Number of hospitals
Private
2
5
1
21
5
34
UNRWA
0
3
6*
0
0
9
Total
2
8
7
21
5
43
2.Number of beds
General
Paediatrics
Maternity
Tuberculosis
Mental
Ophthalmic
25
13
0
0
0
0
116
45
23
0
75
10
35
0
59
35
0
0
235
0
0
10
144
0
48
0
0
0
0
0
459
58
82
45
219
10
Total
38
269
129
48
48
873


(b) Utilization of hospital beds

Field of
operation
Beds
utilized
Cases
admitted
Number of
patient
days
Daily
bed
occupancy
Average
stay
in days
Jordan
Private
38
873
11 388
    31.2
    13.04
West Bank
UNRWA
Private
Government
    42
    152
    75
    1 857
    10 700
    168
12 489
53 312
36 424
    34.22
    146.10
    99.79
    6.72
    4.98
    216.8
Total
    269
    12 725
102 225
    280.06
    8.03
Gaza
UNRWA
Private
    94
    35
    5 062
    1 672
20 395
11 870
    55.87
    32.52
    4.02
    7.09
Total
    129
    6 734
32 265
    88.39
    5.55
Lebanon
Private
    389
    13 278
132 291
    362.44
    9.96
Syrian Arab Republic
Private
    48
    4 870
18 144
    49.70
    3.72

Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian
Arab Rep.
Annual patient days per
1000 population ratio
14
347
80
539
77
* In addition UNRWA runs a tuberculosis hospital at Bureij camp jointly with the Public Health Department.


Table 4. Laboratory services

(a) Available facilities

Number of
laboratories
Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian
Arab Rep.
Total
Subsidized

UNRWA*
-

9
2

7
-

6
4

4
1

7
7

33
Total
9
9
6
8
8
40

b) Services provided

Total
Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian
Arab Rep.
Number
examined
Number
positive
Haematology

Microscopy

Bacteriology

Special tests

Bacteriology
(water samples)
69 810

76 857

118

130


285
117 000

51 681

905

4 606


116
62 913

15 198

77

106


653
27 856

24 115

-

-


334
94 280

45 475

1 445

76


130
371 589

213 326

2 545

4 918


1 518
469

20 799

-

120


-
* Clinical laboratories attached to main health centres.


Table 5. Communicable diseases incidence rates among eligible refugees in 1987

(per 100 000 population)

Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian
Arab Rep.
All fields
of operation
Population eligible
for health services as
at 31 December 1987
785 000295 000405 000245 000235 0001 965 000
Brucellosis1.45.702.532.45.6
Chickenpox2213293293581 116383
Conjunctivitis1 5281 0351531 8322 9031 372
Diarrhoeal diseases:
    (0.3 years)
    (over 3 years NOS)
1 697
753
1 987
1 096
1 997
942
4 978
2 073
4 362
1 676
2 529
1 118
Dysentery (amoebic and bacillary)1833343562301 393391
Enteric group fevers0.1001.618522
Gonorrhea0.1000.800.15
Infectious hepatitis12.6391248.625668.1
Influenza184 1304 18503 6041 918
Leishmaniasis (cutaneous)0.30003.80.6
Measles20.24305017992.8
German measles000015.71.8
Mumps294434541171436368
Meningitis00.30000.05
Pertussis000.302.10.3
Scarlet fever11.3000267.7
Tetanus neonatorum000.3000.05
Trachoma0.7000344.4
Tuberculosis (respiratory)0.73.14.917.91.34.2
N.B. No cases of ankylostomiasis, bilharziasis, cholera, malaria, leprosy, diphtheria, plague, rabies, relapsing fever (endemic), relapsing fever (louse-borne), tetanus (adult), syphilis, typhus (endemic), typhus (louse-borne), poliomyelitis, or yellow fever were reported.


Table 6. Expanded Programme on Immunization
JordanWest
Bank
GazaLebanon
Syrian
Arab
Republic
All
fields of operation
A. Vaccination at maternal and child health care centres
Number of infants below
1 year registered
13 7195 80215 9473 2555 19143 914
Number vaccinated
1.Poliomyelitis virus
vaccine (oral)
i.
ii.
iii.
iv.
First dose
Second dose
Third dose
Booster dose
14 441
14 314
14 121
12 548
6 589
6 628
6 450
6 029
16 440
16 490
16 437
14 128
6 156
5 418
5 411
6 182
6 390
6 740
6 413
6 164
50 016
49 590
48 832
45 051
2.Triple vaccine (DPT)
i.
ii.
iii.
iv.
First dose
Second dose
Third dose
Booster dose
14 543
14 340
14 118
12 889
6 760
6 748
6 647
6 153
16 250
16 221
16 459
14 347
5 367
5 440
5 530
4 815
6 548
6 737
6 424
6 110
49 468
49 486
49 178
44 314
3.


4.


5.
BCG immunization
Primary

Measles vaccine
(attenuated)

Tetanus/toxoid
Pregnant women
14 805


14 188


9 267
7 038


6 446


7 416
14 183


15 455


11 370
5 713


5 402


4 023
6 486


6 614


6 827
48 225


48 105


38 903
B. Vaccinations at schools

Number of new entrants
registered

Number vaccinated
15 0984 60811 1993 5866 37740 868
1.

2.

3.


4.
BCG booster

Diphtheria/tetanus

Tetanus/toxoid
(girls 3rd preparatory)

Rubella
Preparatory girls
11-12 years
0*

10 478

11 956


13 854
4 992

4 804

2 874


0
7 492

7 183

3 764


275
2 322

4 329

2 132


606
6 400

8 422

3 150


571
21 206

35 216

23 876


15 306

* BCG vaccination of schoolchildren in Jordan covered by government tuberculosis teams. Figures not available.


Table 7. Maternal and child health care
Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian
Arab
Republic
All
fields of operation
Number of eligible
population
785 000295 000405 000245 000235 0001 965 000
(a)


(i)
Maternal health
care

Antenatal care
Number of antenatal clinics152516202197
Total number of deliveries12 2966 72716 5424 0305 90245 497
Pregnant women registered10 3266 46519 4763 5914 51144 369
Percentage coverage83.996.1117.789.176.497.5
Average monthly attendance3 5432 0805 8149401 46041 510
(ii)Natal care
Number of deliveries registered110 1385 87016 4712 8014 06139 341
Number at home3 9311 4482 6291 1991 67810 885
Percentage38.724.615.942.841.327.6
Number at camp maternity02114 922005 133
Percentage03.629.80013.1
Number at hospital6 2074 2118 9201 6012 38323 322
Percentage61.271.754.257.258.659.3
Number of live births
Number of reported
deaths below 1 year
Number of reported
stillbirths
Number of maternal
deaths
12 702

116

97
3
6 678

93

68
0
16 421

175

146
7
4 024

55

33
2
5 893

62

63
5
45 718

501

407
17
(b)Child care
Number of child health
clinics
0 to below 1 year
registered
Average monthly
attendance
1 to below 2 years
registered
Average bi-monthly
attendance
2 to below 3 years
registered
Average tri-monthly
attendance
15

13 719

11 157

12 726

11 966

13 215

11 823
24

5 802

6 326

6 028

7 284

5 522

7 357
16

15 947

12 987

14 204

11 513

12 358

10 759
17

3 255

2 164

2 933

3 025

2 847

3 246
21

5 191

4 886

5 886

5 501

5 433

5 377
93

43 914

37 521

41 775

39 288

39 374

38 564



Table 8. Prevalence of malnutrition

(Measured by percentage of children with sub-standard weight for age)
Percentage underweight by degree
First
Second
Third
All degrees
(a)Infants below one year
Jordan
West Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
3.6
2.3
3.7
1.1
0.4
1.0
0.5
1.4
0.3
0.1
0.3
0.1
0.1
0.1
0.0
4.8
2.9
5.2
1.5
0.5
All fields of operation
3.4
1.0
0.2
4.6

(b)
Children 1-below 2 years
Jordan
West Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
4.0
1.6
4.9
0.8
0.4
1.1
0.6
1.7
0.2
0.2
0.2
0.0
0.1
0.1
0.0
5.2
2.2
6.7
1.1
0.6
All fields of operation
3.8
1.2
0.1
5.1
(c)Children 2-below 3 years
Jordan
West Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
2.0
0.5
2.0
0.2
0.2
0.5
0.1
0.6
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
2.5
0.6
2.6
0.2
0.2
All fields of operation
1.7
0.4
0.0
2.1



Table 9. School health services
Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon*
Syrian
Arab
Republic
Total
(a)UNRWA schools
Elementary
Preparatory
86
109
35
63
103
43
49
33
64
47
337
295
Total 195 98 146 82 111 632
(b)
Schoolchildren
Elementary
Preparatory
91 928
42 673
28 427
11 468
63 763
25 053
23 230
10 493
35 965
16 611
243 313
106 298
Total134 60139 89588 81633 72352 576349 611
(c)Service provided
Medical supervision
Number of new entrants15 0984 60811 1993 5866 37740 868
Number of new entrants
examined
10 8983 9475 5243 3847 73231 485
Number of other students screened13 1996 67624 7673 65216 34764 641
Number of students
followed up
Medical
Dental
883
310
7 430
2 542
631
0
1 030
219
1 526
1 431
11 500
4 502
* In Lebanon most of the schools have been inoperative owing to prevailing situation. Number of schoolchildren based on estimates.



Table 10. Tuberculosis control
Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian
Arab
Republic
All fields of operation
(a)Number of persons examined

For the first time
Suspects
Contacts
667
231
1 185
545
3 468
46
1 316
128
63
153
6 699
1 103
(b)Number of newly detected
cases

Incidence rate per 100 000
6

0.7
9

3.0
20

4.9
44

17.9
3

1.3
82

4.2
Number of with positive
tuberculin testing
Number with positive
X-ray pathology
Number with positive
bacteriological
findings
34

86


24
6

11


0
26

28


10
48

44


17
3

3


3
117

172


54
(c)Number of patients under
management

As at 31 December 1987

Ambulatory treatment
Pulmonary
Extrapulmonary
102
366
2 020
82
76
10
158
10
30
12
2 386
480
In-patient care
Pulmonary
Extrapulmonary
0
0
0
0
72
8
24
0
6
0
102
8
(d)Number of deaths due to
tuberculosis
0 7 5 0 1 13



Table 11. Average attendance for milk and supplementary feeding

(a) Ration for special hardship cases (average for 1987)

Jordan
West Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
    21 000
    25 000
    30 000
    27 500
    12 000
_______
Total115 500
_______
(b) Dry rations

Average monthly beneficiaries
Pregnant
women
Nursing
mothers
Tuberculosis
out-patient
Total
Jordan
West Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
1 771
1 488
3 237
442
1 235
5 552
5 426
8 304
1 300
3 612
145
416
72
29
19
7 468
7 330
11 613
1 771
4 866
Total
8 173
24 194
681
33 048

(c) Average daily attendance for a midday meal and protein deficiency menu during 1987

No. of
feeding
centres
No. of
benefi-
ciaries
on protein
deficiency
menu (RNC)
No. of
benefi-
ciaries
on protein
deficiency
menu (SFC)
No. of
benefi-
ciaries
below
2 years
No. of
benefi-
ciaries
2 to
5 years
(SFC)
No. of
benefi-
ciaries
over
6 years
(SFC)
Total
Jordan
West Bank

Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
17
25
3*
21
13
13
176
0
0
139
0
0
32
0
0
62
130
0
190
27
43
103
0
110
3 141
3 980
153
4 119
3 743
2 720
1 574
2 492
51
2 099
2 267
1 479
5 113
6 499
247
6 522
6 140
4 309
Total
92
315
224
473
17 856
9 962
28 830
Displaced persons (non-refugees) 1-15 years, Jordan:
1 881
_________________
* Centres operated by voluntary societies.


(d) Average monthly attendance of refugee beneficiaries receiving milk during 1987

No. of
milk
centres
Dry milk
0-1 year
1-2 years
2-3 years
Total
Jordan
West Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab Republic
13
21
8
15
13
5 737
2 576
5 735
3 789
2 715
10 035
4 215
10 362
6 623
5 412
9 611
3 749
9 185
5 757
5 739
25 383
10 540
25 282
16 169
13 866
Total
70
20 552
36 647
34 041
91 240
Displaced persons (non-refugees),
Jordan:
448
770
764
1 982

(e) Vitamins

Number of vitamin capsules/tablets distributed through UNRWA-operated supplementary feeding centres during the period under review:

      Jordan
      West Bank
      Gaza
      Lebanon
      Syrian Arab Republic
      1 215 050
      1 209 165
      1 203 411
      789 604
      752 437
      Total
      5 169 667
Table 12. Environmental sanitation services
Jordan
West
Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian
Arab
Republic
All fields
of operation
(a) Population served
Number of registered population860 000380 000450 000280 000260 0002 230 000
Number of camps10198131060
Number of camp
population served
(excluding un-registered)
210 00095 000250 000145 00075 000775 000
Percentage of camp
to total population
25%25%55%52%29%35%
(b) Water supply
Percentage served
by private connections
82%87%100%72%66%85%
Percentage served*
by public points
14.2%13%018%015%
(c) Waste disposal
Percentage of
population served by
public latrines
100%99%100%87%100%97%
Percentage served by
private latrines
0%1%0%13%03%
(d) Refuse disposal
Number of camps served
through contractual
arrangements
**with municipalities41102219
with private contractors5000813
Number of camps served
by UNRWA vehicles
1889025
* Remaining population share facilities with other families.

** Including final refuse disposal from two camps, free of charge, by local municipalities, one in the Syrian Arab Republic and one in Lebanon.




Table 13. Staff Training programme

Jordan
West Bank
Gaza
Lebanon
Syrian Arab
Republic
Total
No.
enrolled
No.
graduated
No.
enrolled
No.
graduated
No.
enrolled
No.
graduated
No.
enrolled
No.
graduated
No.
enrolled
No.
graduated
No.
enrolled
No.
graduated
(a) Vocational
training
Laboratory
technician
25223900000401710439
Assistant
pharmacist
2401720000048248944
Public health
technician
0000001811001811
Dental hygienist4716000000004716
Physiotherapist00350000080350
Total
96
389120 0 018118841293110
(b) Postgraduate
training
Fellowships
awarded/
completed 1987
Medical112222101175
Dental000011000011
Nursing203020001181
Environmental
sanitation
000000211131
Total
3
1 5 2 5 3 3 1 3 3 19 8
a/ "No. enrolled" refers to those in attendance during the academic year 1987/1988.

b/ "No. graduated" refers to those who graduated in 1987.







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