UNICEF Mauritania COVID-19 Situation Report: 01 January to 31 December 2021 – Mauritania
Mauritania has recorded 40,083 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 3,453 cases among 0-19 years old, 853 deaths, 38,741 recoveries, and 489 active cases since March 2020.
In 2021, the government continued the implementation of the Covid-19 cohabitation strategy. For response coordination, UNICEF co-led the Infection Prevention and Control (IPC)/WASH and Risk Communication and Community Engagement (RCCE) pillars in support to the government.
The immunization strategy has been at the center of the government’s efforts. UNICEF supported the development of the national immunization strategy and the immunization rollout plan submitted to the COVAX facility and the African Union, as well as the request for the necessary cold chain equipment.
Four mass vaccination campaigns against COVID-19 were organized with UNICEF assisting in planning and logistics. As a result, 714,954 people (>18 years old) were fully vaccinated, which represents 27% of the target population (2,690,855). Mauritania ranks 22 out of 52 countries on the African continent and first in the West African subregion. These mass campaigns have been supported by awareness campaigns for vaccination and compliance with COVID-19 prevention measures.
In terms of nutrition, 22 of the 55 districts are experiencing a nutritional emergency with a global acute malnutrition rate of over 15% and/or a SAM rate of over 2%. The occurrence of a polio epidemic required mobilization and the development of a national campaign, which was organized in December 2021 with the support of UNICEF.
Situation in Numbers
40,083 COVID-19 confirmed cases
853 deaths (March 2020-December 19, 2021)
714,259 people have been fully vaccinated and
1,114,149 received first dose (December 19, 2021)
740,000 Children in need.
10.2 M US$ required gap
Funding Overview and Partnerships
In 2021, HAC is currently funded at 42% for interventions relating to nutrition, health, WASH, education, child protection, communication and social protection. There is a great need for sustaining efforts along the peace-humanitariandevelopmental nexus. UNICEF Mauritania wishes to express its heartfelt gratitude to all public and private sector donors.
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs
In 2021, Mauritania has experienced two COVID-19 major waves in January and June. Since September, confirmed cases are stable but there are fears of a new wave with Omicron variant occurrence. These successive waves have led the authorities to take restrictive measures throughout the year (schools closure, curfew….). These measures have been lifted since October 2021.
At the beginning of vaccination in March, priority was given to at-risk and vulnerable people (chronically ill, over 55 years old, ….). Since July, the target has been extended to the entire adult population, who are encouraged to get vaccinated. There is still a need to vaccinate nearly two million people from target population. Thanks to communication efforts, the population’s hesitation has been overcome gradually, contributing to the national mass vaccination campaigns success. Awareness-raising is necessary to maintain compliance with the barrier gestures but also to reach the target persons to adhere to vaccination.
The polio outbreak, which occurred in the second half of the year, required increased surveillance and the development of a national campaign which took place in December. According to the Ministry of Health, 808,157 children under the age of five were to be vaccinated.
According to ACF’s Biomass Production Report 2021, the rainy season was generally poor, resulting in a significant biomass production deficit, particularly in Tagant, Hodh El Gharbi, Hodh El Chargui, Assaba, Guidimakha and Gorgol. Women and children, the most vulnerable to this situation of food insecurity due to drought, need urgent assistance.
The M’Berra camp is currently hosting 68,825 Malian refugees, including 40,590 children as of November 2021. Refugees and host communities needed continued humanitarian assistance to access basic social services.