WHO has 20 experts working to stop Ebola outbreak in DR Congo

The World Health Organization already has 20 experts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo) working with the country’s health authorities to stop the recent Ebola outbreak, WHO Regional Director for Africa Matshidiso Moeti said.

The new outbreak of Ebola started in DR Congo in early February. Earlier in the day, the number of confirmed Ebola cases reached six, while two people died.

“WHO already has around 20 experts on the ground supporting national and provincial health authorities,” Moeti said at a press conference.

According to Steve Ahuka Mundeke, a microbiology professor at the University of Kinshasa, there are currently enough tools to control Ebola in Africa.

“Therapeutic and vaccine in combination with traditional measures, community-based surveillance, IPC, risk communication and community engagement and of course strong coordination and partnership. Also early detection with laboratory close to the epicenter of the outbreaks,” Mundeke told Sputnik.

The Ebola virus is transmitted to humans from wild animals and is estimated by the World Health Organization to have a 50-percent fatality rate. Ebola is named after the DR Congo’s Ebola River, near which the virus was discovered by Belgian microbiologist Peter Piot and his team in 1976.

The largest Ebola outbreak took place in West Africa in 2014-2015, with more than 11,000 people having died and some 28,000 cases having been reported.

  

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