NIS increases airport screenings to prevent Ebola outbreak

Friday, 11 May, 2018

Seventeen people in northwest Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have died from Ebola, the health ministry said on Tuesday, describing the fresh outbreak as a "public health emergency with global impact".

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has announced a new Ebola virus outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Kongo.

"On Monday, blood samples from five patients in the DRC, particularly in a particular district in DRC, two of the five cases, Ebola was actually confirmed".

The recommendation will now be discussed with global organisations, such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

They are conducting tests, establishing a chronology of events, and working on identifying the reasons which could have led to this outbreak.

Ebola is a deadly, fast-spreading disease that kills its sufferers in a matter of days.

With this reappearance of the Ebola outbreak, the DRC is at its ninth Ebola outbreak since 1976.

While rehydration and symptomatic treatment improve the survival rates of people infected with the virus, no treatment can eliminate the virus to date, says the WHO.

Only two cases have been confirmed as Ebola, by a laboratory in the capital Kinshasa.

Seven people with a hemorrhagic fever, including two confirmed cases of Ebola, were hospitalized in Bikoro as of Thursday, according to Health Minister Oly Ilunga.

Congo - situated escaped the brutal Ebola pandemic, finally declared over in January 2016 - but it was struck by a smaller outbreak past year.

World Health Organization has allocated $1m from its Emergency Contingency Fund to support response activities over the next three months.

Congo's vast, remote geography also gives it an advantage, as outbreaks are often localised and relatively easy to isolate.

The country does not share a border with the DRC, and is separated from it by Chad, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo and Gabon. The virus is thought to spread to humans via infected bush meat.

In spite of regular outbreaks every few years, death tolls in the DRC have been significantly lower.

"WHO will work closely with health authorities and partners to support the national response".