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Climate-related health crisis worsens as disease outbreaks surge

New analysis by the World Health Organization (WHO) has found that the number of reported disease outbreaks and climate-related health emergencies in the greater Horn Africa have reached their highest-ever level this century, deepening a health crisis in a region where 47 million people are already facing acute hunger. Most parts of the region are battling the worst drought in at least 40 years, with an unprecedented fifth rainy season failure now anticipated, while other parts face flooding and conflict.
“Climate change is having an impact here and now on the health of Africans in the greater Horn of Africa. The failure of four consecutive rainy seasons has scorched the earth and pushed people out of their homes in search of food and water,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. “It is critical that world leaders reach agreement on stemming the rise in temperatures at the 27th United Nations Climate Change conference (COP27) which is very appropriately taking place in Africa. As a continent we are the least responsible for global warming, but among the first to experience its tragic impact.”