UNICEF airlifts lifesaving supplies to Yemen to combat cholera as cases surpass 200,000

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SANA’A/SYDNEY, 29 June 2017 – Three UNICEF charter planes have delivered 36 tons of lifesaving medical and water purification supplies to Yemen to scale up efforts to combat the world’s worst cholera outbreak.
The supplies included, 750,000 sachets of Oral Rehydration Salt (ORS) enough to treat 10,000 people,   10.5 million water purification tablets and other sanitation items.
“We are in a race against time. Our teams are working with partners not only to provide treatment to the sick and raise awareness among communities, but also to rapidly replenish and distribute supplies and medicines ”, said Dr Sherin Varkey, UNICEF Deputy Representative in Yemen. “More airlifts of critical supplies will continue in the coming days”.
In just two months, cholera has spread to almost every governorate of Yemen. Already more than 1,300 people have died – one quarter of them children. Civil servants, including doctors, nurses, water engineers and rubbish collectors have not been paid for nearly 10 months.
Since the outbreak was reported on 27 April, UNICEF has distributed over 600,000 ORS sachets and 20,000 Intravenous (IV) fluids to oral rehydration points and at homes. With partners, UNICEF has supported the establishment of 488 oral rehydration therapy points and more than 20 Diarrhoea Treatment Centres across the country.
Notes to editors
The month of June is synonymous with the end of the financial year in Australia. We are calling on all Australians to donate what they can before 30 June to claim a tax deduction for this financial year while enabling UNICEF to reach even more children in need. Now more than ever UNICEF needs your help. Please donate what you can at: https://www.unicef.org.au/appeals/stop-famine-save-lives
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For more information, please contact:
Bismarck Swangin, UNICEF Yemen, bswangin@unicef.org - Tel: +967 712 223 161 (English)
Mohammed Al-Asaadi, UNICEF Yemen, malasaadi@unicef.org, Tel: +967 711760002 (Arabic)
Juliette Touma, UNICEF MENA Regional Office, +962 798 674 628, jtouma@unicef.org
Laura Gibbons, UNICEF Australia, 04 35206273, lgibbons@unicef.org.au