General Information and Specific Actions against the Coronavirus
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by the novel coronavirus (SARS-COV-2). The disease was identified in 2019 and has spread globally, resulting in the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic. Common symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. The virus is typically spread during close contact and via respiratory droplets produced when people cough or sneeze. It may also spread when one touches a contaminated surface and then their face.
SITUATION IN NOSY KOMBA
Nosy Komba is situated at a peripheral location from the mainland which may help delaying the dissemination of the coronavirus. Nevertheless, like everywhere else in Madagascar, the living conditions faced by the local population and the lack of access to basic services makes them quite vulnerable to this crisis.
Among the main risks identified are:
Lack of suitable medical assistance, in the island but also in the region.
Lack of reliable information.
Impossibility to implement effective confinement measures: small houses with several occupants of all ages, families do not have reserve funds for buying food nor ways to stock it.
Lack of family reserve funds to face possible medical emergencies.
Most of these issues need to be addressed at the national level. Yet, we want to do our part and together with the local actors we are putting in place the following actions to support the local population:
Starting from the 6 of April the nurse/midwife’s contract will be extended so that she permanently stays in the village of Antintorona and will be the focal point for implementing preventive campaigns, taking care of sick people, and redirecting the more severe cases to the neighbour island of Nosy Be.
The nurse/midwife is currently receiving specific training from the national health organisation to know how to deal with the coronavirus.
The nurse/midwife, together with the teachers, are preparing posters in Malagasy with health care advices to prevent the contamination with the coronavirus.
We are putting in place a system to keep financially supporting the local activities from distance. In particular we will guarantee that the nurse, the teachers and the scholarship students can pursue their activities in the best condition during this period. With this we will also make sure that the medical center is normally supplied and we will support any additional medical supplies this sanitary crisis may involve.
Creation of an emergency fund, available to support immediate needs of local people during this crisis.
We are in constant contact with the local population and further actions may be taken depending on the evolution of the situation in Madagascar and in the region of Nosy Komba.
Institut National de Santé Publique et Communautaire
RECOMMENDED measures to prevent infection:
Frequent hand washing
Social distancing (maintaining physical distance from others, especially from those with symptoms), and keeping unwashed hands away from the face.
Covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue or inner elbow.