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Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute

UK-EMT deploys to Diphtheria outbreak in Cox’s Bazar refugee camps, Bangladesh

10 January 2018

UK-Med is currently supporting the UK-EMT deployment to the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh to assist with a recent outbreak of the Diphtheria disease.

The Emergency Medical Team at Manchester Airport, ready to depart for Bangladesh.

At the request of the Government of Bangladesh and the World Health Organisation, the EMT will likely be deployed for six weeks in total. The first wave team, who flew out on the 28th December, will be replaced by a second wave team flying out next week.

More than 600,000 Rohingya people have recently fled Burma and arrived in refugee camps on the outskirts of Cox’s Bazar. Haphazard development of the camps has resulted in overcrowded conditions with poor sanitation facilities, factors which contribute to the spreading of the infectious respiratory disease. Wide-scale vaccination programmes have commenced and the UK-EMT are providing treatment to suspected cases within medical facilities provided by the International Organisation for Migration.

The current deployment to Bangladesh is the first time the UK-EMT has deployed since verification by the WHO in December 2016.

UK-Med is hosted by the Humanitarian and Conflict Institute at The University of Manchester.

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