FOREWORD BY THE HUMANITARIAN COORDINATOR
The number of cases of COVID19 in Myanmar has risen steadily since the first was detected on 23 March 2020. The Government of Myanmar has moved quickly to reduce the risk of transmission of the virus and has managed to slow down the spread at the same time as it prepares for potential outbreaks including in humanitarian settings where the virus poses a particular threat.
To counter this threat, the challenges and risks associated with COVID-19 in humanitarian settings in Myanmar requires the urgent mobilization of prevention and response preparedness measures. People in areas affected by ongoing conflict, internally displaced persons (IDPs) in overcrowded camps and camp-like settings in various parts of the country, non-displaced stateless persons in remote areas of Rakhine and other communities with limited access to healthcare, safe water and sanitation services will be highly vulnerable in the event of local outbreaks. Tens of thousands of migrant workers returning from Thailand and elsewhere require basic forms of assistance during their stay in quarantine facilities.
Under the broader strategic framework of the 2020 Myanmar Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP), the United Nations and its local and international NGO partners have developed this COVID-19 Addendum to the HRP in support of Government-led nationwide prevention and response preparedness efforts, in support of various national frameworks including an Action Plan for the Control of COVID-19 in IDP Camps developed by the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement.
This COVID-19 Addendum reflects existing humanitarian programming that has been expanded or reoriented in light of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as new health and non-health interventions to be implemented between April and December 2020. The Addendum requests an additional US$58.8 million to provide COVID-19-specific support for some 915,000 people (855,000 targeted in the HRP and 60,000 returning migrants).
In June, with close to three months having passed since the first COVID-19 cases were confirmed in Myanmar, humanitarian organizations have come together to revise planning parameters and funding requirements up until the end of 2020, to ensure that the document sets out the most accurate picture possible of anticipated needs and programming priorities over the remainder of the year.
With countries around the world grappling with unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we remain extremely grateful for the continued engagement and generosity of the many donors who support humanitarian action here in Myanmar. Humanitarian organizations are firmly committed to doing all they can to ensure the continuity of existing humanitarian assistance, while further scaling up their COVID-19 response.
United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator