Comparative nutrition and health services for victims of drought and hostilities in the Ogaden: Somalia and Ethiopia, 1980-1981.Int J Health Serv 1983; 13(2):289-306IJ
The civil chaos created by a combination of drought and hostilities in the Ogaden region of southern Ethiopia during the past five years has caused the majority of the indigenous, principally nomadic population to flee the area and seek refuge either in Somali refugee camps or in Ethiopian shelters for displaced persons. This paper compares the provision of basic food rations, selective feeding programs, primary health care, and preventive health measures between the two groups. During 1980-1981 Somalia received more international assistance per capita than Ethiopia. Large numbers of Western personnel provided health and nutrition services in Somali refugee camps, whereas no foreigners were involved in Ethiopian shelters. These disparities were largely due to inadequate publicity concerning the problems Ethiopia faces, partly resulting from real and perceived political limitations related to the Soviet presence in that country. Refugee needs in Somalia have been publicized far more adequately, partly due to that country's alignment with the West. The Ethiopians nevertheless demonstrated greater efficiency in assisting their disaster victims; camp services comparable to those in Somalia were available despite greater logistic difficulties and fewer donated resources. The effectiveness of relief operations in Somalia was reduced by political constraints on governmental agencies.