Ebola Outbreak In Congo Has Killed At Least 19

Henrietta Strickland
May 16, 2018

Meanwhile, WHO has been given the go-ahead by officials in the DRC to import and use an experimental Ebola vaccine in the country, Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said. "So I think we can all be prepared", he said.

"The Senate is disturbed that recent reports by media outlets and the World Health Organisation show that the disease is back in the neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo with 19 dead and 39 infected recorded so far". "All is ready now, to use it".

The Africa CDC will dispatch a team on Wednesday to the DRC to assess the situation and the level of support required to ongoing efforts by DRC and other partners to contain the outbreak, said John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC, during a press briefing on Tuesday at the African Union (AU) headquarters in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa.

Mortality rates of Ebola fever, according to the World Health Organization, are extremely high, with the human case-fatality rate ranging from 50 percent to 89 percent, depending on viral sub-type.

Vaccinations could begin by next Monday, he said.

The Ebola vaccination campaign will first target health workers, Ilunga said. "The remaining 12 cases are suspected..."

The Senate's resolution was sequel to a motion on "Ebola Virus Disease Outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Need to Take Precautionary Measures" moved by Senator Oluremi Tinubu (APC-Lagos) during plenary. The last outbreak that was announced a year ago, was contained and declared over by July 2017.

There is no specific treatment for Ebola, which is spread through the bodily fluids of people exhibiting symptoms. It was tested in Guinea in 2015. Merck has given its permission for the vaccine to be used in this outbreak.

Bikoro Health Zone reported the highest number of cases (n=31), followed by Iboko (n=8) and Mbandaka (n=2) Health Zones.

WHO is working with Congo's government and other global organizations, including Medecins Sans Frontieres, to strengthen coordination to fight and contain the Ebola outbreak.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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