An emergency vaccination campaign is underway in the Equateur Province in north-western Democratic Republic of Congo on the border with the Republic of Congo.
Residents of the town of Mbandaka recently received vaccination against Ebola as the epidemic spreads across the province. The World Health Organization is raising the alarm.
“There are now 56 cases and this is of great concern, particularly as it is now surpassing the previous outbreak in this area, which was closed off and controlled at a total of 54 cases”, Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO Regional Director for Africa said.
There are now 56 cases and this is of great concern, particularly as it is now surpassing the previous outbreak in this area.
Out of the 56 cases, there are 22 deaths. The vaccination campaign is targeting urban centres as a priority. The WHO says it does not have sufficient resources to reach the rural areas concerned.
Dr. Alhassane Touré, is a WHO doctor and vaccine Officer in the DR Congo.
“More than 8000 people have been vaccinated, and among those 8000 vaccinated, more than 2700 contacts have been vaccinated. And all the affected health zones have already been covered by the vaccination – so the 5 health zones – and we hope that we will continue to offer the vaccine to the people most at risk and their contacts in order to limit the chain of transmission as quickly as possible”, Dr. Touré said.
This outbreak is the eleventh of the Ebola viral disease in the DR Congo. Between 2018 till date, Central Africa’s largest nation has faced not only an Ebola epidemic, but also a measles epidemic, including the endemic malaria. Cases of polio and cholera have also been reported.