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Source: World Health Organization (WHO)
13 May 2007




Health action in crises
Highlights No 157 – 7 to 13 May 2007

Each week, the World Health Organization Department for Health Action in Crises in Geneva produces information highlights on the health aspects of selected humanitarian crises. Drawing on the various WHO programmes, contributions cover activities from field and country offices and the support provided by WHO regional offices and Headquarters. The mandate of the WHO Departments specifically concerned with Emergency and Humanitarian Action in Crises is to increase the effectiveness of the WHO contribution to crisis preparedness and response, transition and recovery. This note, which is not exhaustive, is designed for internal use and does not reflect any official position of the WHO Secretariat.


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OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN TERRITORY

Assessments and events:

• OCHA issued two special focus papers entitled A Year of Decline: The Financial and Institutional Status of the Palestinian Authority.

• Overall, there has been a deterioration in the humanitarian situation and an increase in violence: More than two-thirds of the population live in poverty and 34% are food insecure. Unemployment has risen from 33.1% in 2005 to 41.8%, and full salaries have not been handed out since March 2006.

• The strike in the West Bank health sector continues: most facilities have stopped immunization and provision of drugs to chronic patients, with the exception of insulin, kidney medications and psychotropic medications. Elective surgical and outpatient services remain closed and only critical emergencies and deliveries are admitted for treatment.

Actions:

• WHO continues monitoring health care provision in the West Bank and is providing technical support and supplies to the MoH.

• WHO and the MoH nutrition department met with the Ministry of Education to discuss launching a nutritional surveillance system in schools. WHO will begin training teachers on the surveillance system.

• In 2006, WHO’s emergency activities were funded by the Organization’s Regular Budget and contributions from ECHO, Finland, Japan and Norway as well as the CERF. For 2007, support was pledged by Norway and Italy.

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