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Ebola: WHO says over 70 experts deployed in DR Congo

Ebola: WHO says over 70 experts deployed in DR Congo
Experts on ground to help vaccination efforts, community engagement, infection prevention

By Rodrigue Forku

YAOUNDE, Cameroon (AA) – Over 70 experts have been deployed in Equateur, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) so far to support the country in the fight against Ebola virus, the Africa office of World Health Organization said on Thursday.

Experts on the ground are supporting vaccination efforts, community engagement, infection prevention, and control IPC (infection prevention and control) and clinical care, according to the WHO.

There are so far 54 cases (51 confirmed, 3 probable) 21 deceased, and 14 recovered from the 11th Ebola virus disease outbreak in Mbandaka, Equateur province in the DRC, the UN health agency tweeted.

The WHO had earlier expressed concern about the outbreak in the country’s west.

Earlier this week, Mike Ryan, the WHO's top emergency expert, admitted that the 11th Ebola outbreak in the DRC is still a very active outbreak and a great cause of concern.

On Wednesday, David Mclachlan-Karr, UN humanitarian coordinator in DR Congo, said the situation in the DRC is an “emergency”.

“We must step up our efforts to get rid of the virus,” the UN official added.

On May 14, the WHO and the DRC government declared the country free from the 10th outbreak of the epidemic.

The 10th outbreak, declared in North Kivu on August 1, 2018, was the second largest in the world, and was particularly challenging as it took place an active conflict zone. There were 3,470 cases, 2,287 deaths and 1,171 survivors, according to the WHO.

Ebola, a tropical fever that first appeared in 1976 in Sudan and the DRC, is transmitted to humans from wild animals.

It can also spread through contact with body fluids of infected people, or of those who have died from the virus.

Ebola caused global alarm in 2014 when the world's worst outbreak began in West Africa, killing more than 11,300 people and infecting an estimated 28,600 as it swept through Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.

source: News Feed
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