In Congo, war and Ebola outbreak spread fear to neighboring nations

In Congo, war and Ebola outbreak spread fear to neighboring nations

In Congo, war and Ebola outbreak spread fear to neighboring nations

The World Health Organization, CDC and other global health organizations say they are anxious about the current Ebola outbreak spreading to port cities like Butembo, which will only exacerbate infection transmission rates.

DR Congo's health ministry says the deadly Ebola virus has infected 300 people in the country eastern region since the outbreak nearly two months ago.

This precaution is being taken because the health care officials are anxious that the infection would spread into the country from the borders shared with Democratic Republic of Congo. In some cases, the virus is spread through contact with someone who has died from the disease.

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"Uganda has taken a very huge step in mitigating the risk of Ebola among health workers".

By far the worst epidemic was in West Africa in 2014-2016, when 28,000 people were infected and 11,000 died in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea.Ebola kills between 20 percent and 70 percent of victims, depending on the strain.

According to the World Health Organization, until November 1 there were 279 cases of Ebola infection in the DRC, 244 confirmed by laboratory tests, 179 people died as a result of the disease and 81 people were able to recover.

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It is the tenth outbreak of Ebola in the country, then called Zaire, where the disease was first detected in 1976.

Yonas Tegegn Woldemariam, WHO's Uganda representative said, "In previous [Ebola] outbreaks, Uganda lost health workers, including the renowned Dr Matthew Lukwiya, as they cared for patients".

While the vaccine is not available for public use and is considered experimental, it's being handed out under a compassionate use program, the World Health Organization said. "Not because of the unequipped terrain and unpaved dirt roads but because these villages act as front lines between the different armed groups", Dr. Eric Mukuma, a health zone coordinator for the aid group CARE, wrote in an editorial in the Guardian newspaper.Some patients have also fled treatment centers, carrying the virus with them. Uganda was affected before in 2000 and 2001 where the infection killed 261 and infected 574 individuals. There are some experimental antibody based therapies that are being tried in treating the disease.

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This latest vaccine to be administered has been developed by Merck and is not yet licensed.

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