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Source: World Health Organization (WHO)
4 July 2007


Lebanon Crisis: Health Cluster Bulletin No. 23
04 Jul 2007

The Lebanon Crisis Health Cluster Bulletin aims to give an overview of the health activities conducted by the health cluster partners in relation to the latest Lebanon conflict as well as the crisis in the Palestinian camps. It compiles health information received from the different organizations working in the most affected areas.

The Health Cluster Bulletin will be issued every Wednesday.

Highlights
No outbreak was reported through the Early Warning and Response system (EWARS).
One New landmines/UXOs/cluster bombs’ casualty was registered last week as per the National Demining Office (NDO) and UNDP Mine action report.

Nahr El-Bared Crisis
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) is leading the Humanitarian and Relief interventions in response to the Nahr El-Bared Crisis.

Situation Overview
According to the National Demining Office (NDO) and UNDP Mine action, one new casualty was registered during the last week, bringing the total number of military and civilian casualty figures due to landmines/UXOs/cluster bombs to 241.

Nahr El-Bared Crisis
Two refugees were killed and 33 injured during the demonstration that occurred on Friday 29 June inside Beddawi Camp and expanded later on to the main road leading to Beddawi town.
According to UNRWA, reports from Beddawi and Mina clinics as well as the mobile clinic showed no changes in the incidence of communicable diseases.
The International Committee for Red Cross (ICRC) as well as the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) were unable to evacuate the wounded from the Nahr El Bared camp and to supply the camp’s remaining residents with medications, food and
water.
A plan of the first phase (72-96 hours) of entry to Nahr El-Bared camp was discussed with the various partners and responsibilities were allocated.
As of July 2, 2007, UNRWA reported to changes in the numbers of IDRs.


National and international Health Cluster partners are providing support in four core areas:

1. Assessment and monitoring
WHO is supporting the Notre Dame University (NDU) in conducting an assessment of Elderly Nursing Homes. The project aims at establishing a database on the various health and social aspects of institutionalized elderly as well as assessing the
institutional support and care provided. The project will also support the establishment of a center for research on Elderly Health Care in Lebanon.
WHO engaged the services of the school of Nursing at the American University of Beirut to conduct a “Psychiatric Morbidity in South Lebanon Post July 2006 war:
Community Assessment and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Randomized Group Interventions”.
Through the EWARS, three cases of suspected Pertussis and one case of confirmed Hepatitis A case were reported from Tyr.

2. Health coordination
The Health cluster meeting took place on Tuesday July 3 and was attended by 2 partners. The next Health Cluster meeting will take place on Tuesday July 17 at 3:00 pm, WHO office-Tyr.
The next Mental Health and Psychosocial Support sub-cluster coordination meeting will take place on July 23 at 12:00 pm, WHO office within the Ministry of Public Health premises-Tyr.
The WATSAN sub-cluster meeting is taking place every other Thursday at 12:00 at the Water Authority in Saida.
The Health Cluster and Mental Health Matrices are regularly updated and shared with partners.

Nahr El-Bared Crisis
The weekly Health Cluster meeting chaired by UNRWA took place on July 3 at UNRWA-Lebanon Field Office in Beirut. Six partners from UN agencies, national and international Non Governmental Organizations operating in the North area attended
the meeting. The next meeting will be held at the same venue on Tuesday July 10 at 11:00.
UNRWA Chief Field Health Programme held two coordination meetings in North Lebanon Area respectively with the Health Care Society, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) and the Qatari Red Crescent Society (QRCS) in order to
coordinate properly the medicines’ distribution avoiding duplication and abuse. A third meeting was conducted with the PLO/ NLA representatives discussing the health needs of all Palestine refugees all over North Lebanon.
The Resident Coordinator Representative (RCO) and UNRWA representative are attending, on behalf of all UN agencies, a daily meeting with the Prime Minister to coordinate and update on relief actions for the crisis in the Palestinian camps.
An updated Humanitarian intervention matrix of the various partners acting in response to the Nahr El-Bared crisis is available on www.lebanon-support.org.

3. Filling health gaps
International Medical Corps (IMC) is providing the outpatients’ clinic in Tibnin governmental hospital with furniture.
UNFPA is supporting the implementation of a project on “Raising Awareness among Peace keeping Forces on Culturally Sensitive Gender Issues and HIV/AIDS”. The project aims at increasing availability of information and enhancing awareness of peacekeeping forces on HIV/AIDS, protection and special needs for women, as well as increasing availability of counseling services in the UNIFIL medical clinic/health center.

Nahr El-Bared Crisis
UNRWA provision of medical services and vaccination of children to displaced families continues through its mobile clinic (223 consultations during this week) as well as at the Beddawi and Mina clinics where the number of consultations returned
to normal.
UNRWA extended health services to residents of North Lebanon at all UNRWA contracted health institutions in the area. Similar to IDRs, the services include provision of medicines of life-saving nature, kidney dialysis and hospitalization,
laboratory and outpatient services.
UNICEF procured and will be distributing 300 baby kits for pregnant women among the IDRs.
UNFPA provided UNRWA with 2000 additional family hygiene kits to be distributed to displaced families from Nahr El Bared Camp.
The Lebanese Red Cross Society (LRCS) Emergency Medical Services (EMS) teams maintain their status of readiness. Twelve ambulances equipped by 52 first aid workers are working in the six first aid posts while 15 ambulances with 90 first aid
workers are on stand by in the EMS stations. The teams performed as of July 2 various missions transporting 477 wounded, 65 corpses, 1,016 civilians from the camp’s entrance, 380 ill persons in medical emergency.
LRC Youth Department is managing humanitarian assistance of an IDRs’ center hosting 297 persons in Loukman School in Beddawi camp, and a new center in Beddawi governmental school hosting 246 persons. The youth volunteers are distributing food and humanitarian aid in the centers, as well as managing educational programs for children.
UNRWA is supporting maintenance services to 10 to 15 IDRs shelters in Beddawi camp daily.
UNRWA provided the displacement centers with 10 first aid emergency kits for use by non-medical persons.
UNRWA is pumping an average of 3,000 cubic meters of potable water to Beddawi camp and is disposing of an average of 20 tons of refuse daily.

4. Preserving and supporting local health systems
Nahr El-Bared Crisis
UNICEF in collaboration with Popular Aid for Relief and Development (PARD) will be establishing 120 small committees for women IDRs to initiate activities regarding hygiene promotion and breastfeeding practices.
UNICEF is conducting a health education campaign among IDRs in the North. So far, 2,000 posters on personal hygiene and 1,000 posters on scabies were distributed in the North. UNICEF has also supplied UNRWA with 500 posters on each topic for display at UNRWA institutions in other regions in Lebanon.
International Committee for Red Cross (ICRC) organized a two days seminar about War Surgery for general surgeons working in hospitals in South Lebanon and South Beqaa. The seminar was led by 2 ICRC surgeons from Geneva as well as lecturers from the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) and the American University Hospital (AUH), and attended by 38 surgeons from 18 hospitals in 7 cazas. Another seminar will take place next week in Beirut.

World Health Organization
http://www.leb.emro.who.int/
http://www.virtualhic.org
All inputs are welcome on:
health@leb.emro.who.int
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