WHO Reports New Ebola Outbreak in North-West DR Congo

Health authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo have declared a new outbreak of Ebola after a case was confirmed in Mbandaka, a city in the north-western Equateur Province, the World Health Organization (WHO) says.

UN News reports that the infected patient was a 31-year-old man who began experiencing symptoms on April 5, 2022. On April 21, 2022, he was admitted to an Ebola treatment centre for intensive care but died later that day. So far, just one case has been confirmed and investigations to determine the source of the outbreak are ongoing.

Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa, says DRC health authorities have more experience than anyone else in the world at controlling Ebola outbreaks quickly. There have been fourteen Ebola outbreaks in the country since 1976. The new outbreak is the sixth since 2018 - the most frequent occurrence in the country's Ebola history, according to the UN health agency.

Ebola is a severe, often fatal illness affecting humans and other primates. Case fatality rates have varied from 25% to 90% in past outbreaks.

Health workers put on personal protective equipment (PPE) before entering an Ebola quarantine zone in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (file)

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