The infected patient is a 31-year-old man who started showing symptoms on April 5 and after more than a week of home caresought treatment at a local health facility.
On April 21, he was accepted into a Ebola intensive care center but died later that day. Recognizing the symptoms, medical staff immediately sent samples for testing for Ebola virus disease, WHO explain.
To date, there has been only one confirmed case and investigations to determine the source of the outbreak are underway.
The fourteenth outbreak in the country
Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa, said: “Time is not up to us. “The disease has been on for two weeks and we are now playing catch. The good news is that the health authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo have more experience than anyone in the world in controlling the Ebola outbreak quickly,” he added.
Had Fourteen Ebola outbreaks in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 1976. The new outbreak is the sixth since 2018 – the most frequent outbreak in the country’s Ebola history, according to the United Nations health agency.
Previous outbreaks in the province of Equateur were in 2020 and 2018, with 130 and 54 cases recorded.
World Bank / Vincent Tremeau
Community vaccination is about to start
WHO announced that deceased patients are buried safely and dignified, including modifying traditional funeral rites to minimize the risk of infectious liquids infecting attendees.
Health authorities are also identifying contacts to monitor health and disinfect medical facilities where patients are treated.
Moreover, Plans to start vaccinations in the coming days are underway with stockpiles of Ebola vaccine rVSV-ZEBOV already available in the cities of Goma and Kinshasa.
The vaccine will be delivered to Mbandaka and administered through a ’round vaccination strategy – where contacts and contacts are immunized to limit the spread of the virus, WHO stressed. and protect life,” emphasized WHO.
Dr Moeti added: “Many people in Mbandaka have been vaccinated against Ebola, which will help reduce the impact of the disease. “All people who were vaccinated during the 2020 outbreak will be re-vaccinated.”
Ebola is a serious, often fatal disease that affects humans and other primates. The case fatality rate has varied from 25% to 90% in previous outbreaks.