EAC to be on alert after WHO announced Ebola outbreak in DRC
The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced the discovery of a new Ebola epidemic in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Despite the fact that just one case has been verified so far, there are worries that the epidemic may spread since the patient was not recognized and separated immediately.
Between 2013 and 2015, an Ebola epidemic in West Africa killed at least 11,000 people; the hemorrhagic illness has a 50% fatality rate.
This current Ebola epidemic began in Mbandaka, a highly populated city with road and air connections to Kinshasa, the capital.
The patient had been sick for more than a week before seeking medical attention, and he died the day he was taken to the hospital.
Fiona Braka, the WHO’s Africa emergencies manager, expressed worry about the delay in medical attention.
“It’s critical that we promptly identify all contacts and do the appropriate isolation and monitoring to ensure that all possibly affected individuals are identified and that the disease transmission is slowed,” she said.
This is the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s sixth Ebola epidemic since 2018; its health personnel have been affected, and the country has a vaccine stockpile.
A large contact tracking effort, as well as a vaccination drive, is under underway.
The country’s last epidemic was brief, with just 11 cases and six fatalities. The hope is that, despite the delay, this epidemic can be handled in the same manner.