The Democratic Republic of the Congo Ministry of Health (MoH) and the World Health Organization (WHO) made an announcement this week concerning the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak: Slightly over a month into the response, further spread of EVD has largely been contained.
However, the announcement was made with cautious optimism. Health officials remind us there should be no room for laxity and complacency until the outbreak is controlled. The focus of operations remains on intensive surveillance and active case finding.
No new confirmed EVD cases have been reported in Bikoro and Wangata health zones since mid-May 2018, while the last confirmed case-patient in Iboko developed symptoms on June 2 and died one week later.
The overall total stands at 61 cases, including 38 confirmed, 14 probable, and 9 suspected illnesses. The fatality count held steady at 28.
The MoH is leading the response in the affected health zones with support from WHO and partners. Priorities include the strengthening of surveillance and contract tracing, laboratory capacity, infection prevention and control (IPC), case management, community engagement, safe and dignified burials, response coordination and vaccination.
Additionally, to avoid the spread of the disease from affected provinces to non-affected provinces and to other countries, the Democratic Republic of the Congo has put into place cross-border surveillance at points of entry (neighboring at-risk zones, provinces, countries, and at important travellers’ congregation points). WHO continues to work closely with the Ministries of Health from nine neighboring countries to strengthen preparedness in order to mitigate the risk of international spread.
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