Via ReliefWeb, UNICEF has published Liberia Ebola Situation Report no. 68 - 7 January 2015. Click through to download the PDF. The highlights:
· According to the Liberian Ministry of Health, as of 3 January, the cumulative total of suspected, probable and confirmed cases of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in Liberia stood at 8,162. There were 17 confirmed new EVD cases between 25 December 2014 and 2 January 2015, representing an average rate of two-three new cases per day.
· The Government of Liberia decided to re-open schools on 2 February 2015, for the 2015 academic year. While Education Cluster partners fully support the government’s efforts to reopen schools as soon as possible, there is a concern that it will not be possible to effectively implement the protocols in all schools by 2 February.
· The number of children registered as orphaned by EVD is 4,372. All of the children identified are currently receiving follow-up and psychosocial support. However, the Child Protection sub-Cluster estimated that as many as 7,500 children can be orphans due to EVD. UNICEF is partnering with the government and NGOs to train and engage more social workers to identify and ensure that all the orphans are in an adequate protective environment.
· UNICEF supported the investigation and reporting of community deaths and secret burials in Sinoe, Nimba and Grand Cape Mount counties.
· Preliminary results of the Knowledge, Attitude and Practices (KAP) survey were submitted and final results are expected this week.
· In addition to 15,000 thermo-guns last week, UNICEF initiated procurement of sanitation and hygiene supplies (hand washing buckets, sprayers, protective equipment for cleaning) to ensure that all 5,181 Liberian schools have the essential hygiene and hand washing materials to promote safe learning environments upon re-opening, in compliance with the endorsed protocols.
· The “Protocols for Safe School Environments in the EVD Outbreak in Liberia”, developed with the support of the Health and WASH clusters, were endorsed by the Ministry of Education. These Protocols define the minimum requirements that have to be in place in every school to reduce EVD risk levels to a minimum from a public health perspective.
· Since the beginning of the outbreak, UNICEF has procured USD 21.7 million worth of supplies to aid the EVD response in Liberia. Last week, 282 mobile phones were delivered to 7 ETUs in Montserrado county and additional 9 RITE kits are being assembled to be prepositioned at field logistics bases and counties.