Published: Thu, May 17, 2018
Medicine | By Daryl Nelson

Congo: Ebola Spreads to Urban Area of The Country Leaving 23 Dead

Congo: Ebola Spreads to Urban Area of The Country Leaving 23 Dead

Thousands of doses of Ebola vaccine have arrived the Democratic Republic of Congo, as the country battles outbreak of the disease. The spread of the deadly virus from the countryside and into a city that is home to about a million people pushes the current outbreak into a "new phase", essentially making the efforts to contain the outbreak far harder.

He said authorities would intensify population tracing at all air, river and road routes out of the city. WHO says it will use the "ring vaccination" method by administering the treatment to voluntary contacts, and contacts of those contacts, besides health workers.

Ebola is a serious infectious illness that causes internal bleeding and often proves fatal.

"The arrival of Ebola in an urban area is very concerning and WHO and partners are working together to rapidly scale up the search for all contacts of the confirmed case in the Mbandaka area", said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa.

This Ebola recurrence is the ninth DRC has faced in 4 decades after the first in 1976.

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Forty-four cases have been reported in the outbreak so far, including three confirmed, 20 probable and 21 suspected, according to the WHO's tally. After analysis, one of the two samples was positive, "said Congolese Minister of Health Orly Ilunga in a statement released late Wednesday night".

Over 11,000 people have died of Ebola in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone between 2014 and 2016.

"This weekend, two suspected cases of hemorrhagic fever were reported in the health zone of Wangata, one of the health zones of Mbandaka City".

The vaccine requires storage at a temperature between -60 and -80 degrees C, tricky in a country with unreliable electricity.

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