DEALING WITH COVID-19

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Communities who have already been forced to leave everything behind to keep their families safe are now facing a new, silent threat: the coronavirus. In the midst of ongoing conflict and a collapsed health system, people are now confronting COVID-19. As of September 1, there have been more than 1,900 confirmed cases of COVID-19, resulting in 567 deaths.

 

People infected with severe cases of COVID-19 face challenges in accessing treatment due to the country’s lack of hospital beds. Those with milder cases can’t afford at-home treatments.

“Many people are not getting treatment simply because they don’t have the financial means, not because they are not familiar with the process or treatment protocol,”.

Financial barriers and lack of access to healthcare make an already critical situation worse.

COVID-19 AND THE IMPACT ON FOOD SECURITY IN YEMEN

The pandemic is elevating concerns around a worsening food crisis in Yemen. With many people losing their jobs, families are struggling to provide food, medicine, and other necessities without income.

Has significantly increased as a result of the ongoing conflict, which began in 2015. Communities are dealing with inflation, currency depreciation of their currency, and rising prices for food and other essential goods.

“We already had a crisis here well before coronavirus, so you can imagine what the situation is like now,” says Dr Samar. “The already dire situation is likely to deteriorate considerably.”

HOW YEMENI CITIZENS HAVE REACTED TO COVID-19

Believed many people became infected and died from the virus before any official announcement from the Ministry of Health.

“We could not expect citizens to be aware or even believe that coronavirus was real,” says Dr. Samar. “Even though doctors issued warnings, people just ignored them until the Ministry officially reported the first COVID-19 victim.”

With air, land, and sea travel to and from the war-torn country suspended, Yemenis felt that an outbreak was unlikely. However, as more cases recorded, people started to realize that Yemen had open land borders with neighboring countries. Trucks were given access, and drivers infected with the virus may have helped it to spread.

Yemen’s already devastated health system is now under enormous strain because of this new pandemic. “As humanitarian workers, we want to help, but our hands are tied,” says Dr Samar.

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“Our volunteers visit rural homes and go to remote areas to meet different households,” says Dr. Samar. “They make sure these meetings are held outside in open spaces where they talk about the coronavirus and how to stay safe.”

In addition to awareness-raising campaigns, we’ve also taken steps to reduce the spread of COVID-19 by installing new handwashing stations and improving the water supply in the country. Our teams are also helping struggling families cope by providing cash transfers, allowing them to buy what they need while supporting local markets.

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