Southern and Eastern Africa COVID-19 Digest

Situation Report
DR Congo — Trends

Significant spike in COVID-19 cases amidst another Ebola outbreak in the country

  • First case: 10 March 2020

  • Total cases: 6,826 (as of 28 June 2020)

  • Total deaths: 157

  • Schools: Closed (19.1 million learners affected).

  • Borders/flights: All borders closed.

  • Containment measures: State of Emergency decreed by the Head of State since 24 March to halt the spread of the pandemic in the DRC; The capital, Kinshasa, is under lockdown, which includes restrictions to travel between the city and the rest of the country and the prohibition of all gatherings of people in public spaces.

Situation:

On 10 March, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) recorded its first case. Since then, the country has recorded a significant increase in cases, from 1,024 cases in 10 May to 6,826, to date. As part of its COVID-19 response, the Government declared on 24 March a State of Emergency and imposed the confinement of the capital, Kinshasa, which includes restrictions to travel between Kinshasa and the rest of the country and the prohibition of all gatherings of people in public spaces. The first mass screening centre was opened on 26 May in one of the city’s largest football stadium, with the aim of expanding the case detection system. In addition, the European Union announced that it was allocating 5 million euros to support the Saint -Joseph hospital, that will serve to strengthen the response capacity to the virus and improve the overall provision of health services. The first of three aircrafts, as part of the EU’s humanitarian airlift to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), carried 170 humanitarian workers from 41 humanitarian agencies and 40 tons of basic humanitarian supplies to help the country meet their endemic requirements and on 7 June. The country is still struggling to stop its recurring Ebola epidemic, that, according to WHO figures, has infected approximately 3,500 people and killed 2,280 in addition to increasing COVID-19 cases.

Response:

The multi-sectoral humanitarian plan specific to the COVID-19 response is an addendum to the Humanitarian Response Plan 2020 (HRP) in order to integrate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on existing humanitarian needs and on the activities of humanitarian partners. This plan is in line with :

1) The COVID-19 Global Humanitarian Response Plan (GHRP) - 287.8 millions USD for DRC.

2) The COVID-19 epidemic preparedness and response plan in the Democratic Republic of Congo developed by the government

This multi-sectoral humanitarian plan describes the humanitarian needs and response to assist the most vulnerable people affected directly or indirectly by the COVID-19 epidemic in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The plan therefore supports the national response plan but is not limited to the activities described in the national response plan. The plan is established until December 2020 in alignment with the GHRP and the HRP 2020.

The World Bank has approved the disbursement of US$445 million under its Eastern DRC Stabilization for Peace Project (STEP 2).  Through this funding nearly 2.5 million people will benefit from the construction and maintenance of 2,000 basic infrastructure facilities, including at least 500 schools to support the free primary education program, and 300,000 people will receive cash transfers in the 1,000 targeted communities worth $100 million. As part of the COVID-19 response, this project aims to reallocate and mobilize funds to mitigatesocio-economic impacts on the Congolese population and better protect the most vulnerable households, via schemes such as creating more than 1.3 million temporary work days for vulnerable people, equipping 45,000 households with improved agro-pastoral technologies. Official sources:

Ministry of Health Official Twitter

Other links:

Global Humanitarian Response Plan 2020

DRC World Health Organisation Country Office

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