Weight gain a health sign at MSF feeding centres in Kisangani

MSF has been active in Kisangani with both TFCs (Therapeutic Feeding Centre) and SFCs (Supplementary Feeding Centre). Both centres have reported increased numbers attending the facilities. There has also been a substantial weight gain for the children attending the MSF centres.

Since April 1999 until the present, a total of 12,719 children have received treatment at the MSF SFC in Kisangani. Of those, 10,648 have successfully gained weight and been discharged after treatment.

Since April 1999 until the present, 7,694 children have received treatment at our TFC. Of those 5,899 have successfully gained weight and successfully completed their treatment.

On July 7
Total number of children in the TFC is 884
Total number of children in the SFC is 1,623

As of 14th July, the figures were:
Total number of children in the TFC is 957
Total number of children at the SFC is 1,727

There has been an 8% increase in the TFC and a 6%
increase in the SFC.

It is expected that the numbers of children at the TFC and SFC will increase.

Before the war in May, the nutritional status of the Kisangani population in
general was precarious - and malnutrition was chronic in the region due
to the lack of a balanced diet and poor food security. The six-day war
in June caused major disruptions to the normal socio-economic
activities in Kisangani, which has further damaged the population's
health and nutritional status.

The children are the most vulnerable and fragile in this society and
the consequences of the recent insecurity are becoming evident. More
and more new cases are arriving in the centre as the displaced
population, who were hiding in the forest, return to their houses. The
situation will continue to deteriorate as the returning displaced find
little or no food and still do not have access to the fields due to
fears the military has mined them.

MSF has noticed a considerable weight gain in the children
participating in the SFC treatment. During the week 12th - 18th June,
the number of children gaining weight was 40%. During the week of July 3rd-9th, there was an increase of 24%, and 64% of the children gained
weight. MSF staff in the field presume that this weight gain is due to the increased rations and the education programme, which we ran as a parallel
activity. The families have been educated on the importance of
keeping the dry ration for the children who attend the SFC only, and
not the entire family.

MSF has completed their follow-up of the clinics to which they
distributed medications on an emergency basis. There has been a
decrease in the numbers of people arriving in these centres. There was
an average of 5,000 consultations per week for 32 health structures.
There has been no indication of major outbreaks of epidemics, but the
majority of patients have been admitted with malaria in all the
clinics.

From 19th to 29th June, the MSF mental health programme has provided
the following assistance:
210 individual interventions
313 collective interventions

They continue to provide information about mental health problems and
symptoms of traumatized people on the radio, television and newspaper.
An independent office has been opened for the programme.

MSF has made an exploratory mission to Gbadolite and Basankuso. They
will restart their original primary health care programme and start
resupplying 13 health centres outside of Kisangani.


INTERNALLY DISPLACED PERSONS

There are approximately 2,835 IDPs in Camp Katele or 389 families.
UNOCHA has distributed non-food items, which include blankets,
impregnated mosquito nets and plastic sheeting.

MSF is still collecting data about the numbers of displaced in the north and south. There has been a number of displaced
returning from the northern axis but the population in the south
remains firmly installed. There are more and more signs of
construction there.