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Online Discussion: Tracking new emerging diseases and the next pandemic

Ebola Again

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    Posted: August 18 2018 at 1:28pm
Technophobe: The death toll is still rising.

Militia threat hampers Ebola fight in Congo as disease kills 47

Militia violence in Democratic Republic of Congo has prevented aid workers from reaching some potential cases in an outbreak of Ebola that has so far killed 47 people, the World Health Organization said on Friday.

GENEVA: Militia violence in Democratic Republic of Congo has prevented aid workers from reaching some potential cases in an outbreak of Ebola that has so far killed 47 people, the World Health Organization said on Friday.

Over 2,000 people have been potentially exposed to the virus that began in North Kivu province, but the violence means officials cannot be sure if they have identified all the chains by which it is spreading in the east of the vast country.

"We don't know if we are having all transmission chains identified. We expect to see more cases as a result of earlier infections and these infections developing into illness," WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic told a news briefing in Geneva.

"The worst-case scenario is that we have these security blind spots where the epidemic could take hold that we don't know about," he said.

Congo's Health Ministry said confirmed and probable cases numbered 87 in total, including 47 deaths. About 2,150 people have been identified as contacts of people infected with the disease, which causes fever, vomiting and diarrhea.

Health workers "have a huge amount of work to do to follow up on these contacts, to continue the investigations and the active search for cases, as well as to prepare the ground for the vaccination teams," the ministry said in a statement late on Friday.
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The outbreak is spreading across the lush farmlands of eastern Congo. Its epicenter is the town of Mangina in North Kivu province and it has already reached neighboring Ituri province.

Congo has experienced 10 Ebola outbreaks since the virus was discovered on the Ebola River in 1976, altogether killing some 900 people.

An epidemic between 2013 and 2016 killed more than 11,300 people in West Africa.

The United Nations children's agency UNICEF said an unusually high proportion of the people affected in this outbreak were children.

Two children have already died from the disease, and centers in Beni and Mangina were treating six children infected by the disease or suspected to be.

UNICEF said it had also identified 53 orphaned children who have lost their parents to Ebola.

"The impact of the disease on children is not limited to those who have been infected or suspected," Gianfranco Rotigliano, the UNICEF representative in Congo, said in a statement.

"Many children are faced with the illness or death of their parents and loved one

s, while some children have lost large parts of their families and become isolated. These children urgently need our support".

The WHO said more than 500 people including health workers have been vaccinated against the disease. It had deployed more than 100 experts to Mangina and Beni towns to oversee tracing, vaccination and safe burials.

There were, however, "red zones" near Mangina that aid workers could not enter for security reasons, Jasarevic said.

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Additonal reporting by Angus MacSwan and Edward McAllister; Editing by Alison Williams, Toni Reinhold)
Source: Reuters

My source:   https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/world/militia-threat-hampers-ebola-fight-in-congo-as-disease-kills-47-10628334
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 18 2018 at 7:15am
The WHO publishes regular ebola updates at:   http://www.who.int/ebola/en/ but this series of pages resist copying across to AFT.

This prece was available however:   

Current situation: DRC 2018

    National response plan North Kivu Province
    10 August 2018
    Strategic response plan Équateur Province
    29 May 2018
    Ebola outbreak response
    Presentation by Dr Peter Salama, 23 May 2018
    FAQ: Compassionate use of investigational vaccine for the Ebola outbreak in DRC
    Updated 23 May 2018
    Ebola treatments approved for compassionate use in current outbreak
    6 June 2018
    Consultation on Clinical Trial Design for Ebola Virus Disease
    21 June 2018

'And this recent article (yesterday) was sumarised by Reuters:
Congo Ebola outbreak kills 44 as aid workers struggle to contain spread in conflict zone

Posted yesterday at 7:59pm

A deadly Ebola outbreak in a conflict-hit area of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) poses an "unprecedented" challenge to health workers trying to access victims and contain the disease, medical charities said.
Key points:

    Latest outbreak started just a week after another was declared to be over
    Longstanding conflict in the region has made people more susceptible to disease
    WHO are concerned an epidemic could break out in security blindspots

At least 44 people have died and 78 people have been infected in the Congo's tenth Ebola outbreak since the deadly virus was discovered in the 1970s, according to the World Health Organisation.

At least 1,500 people have been potentially exposed to the deadly virus in North Kivu province but the violence means officials cannot be sure if they have identified all the chains by which it is spreading in the east of the vast country.

"We don't know if we are having all transmission chains identified. We expect to see more cases as a result of earlier infections and these infections developing into illness," WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic told a news briefing in Geneva.

"The worst-case scenario is that we have these security blindspots where the epidemic could take hold that we don't know about," he said.

The latest outbreak started just a week after the country declared an end to a separate outbreak and marks the first time responders have had to work in an active conflict zone, where armed groups regularly kill and kidnap civilians.

"With Ebola, this situation is unprecedented. It will make the response longer and more expensive," said Michelle Gayer, director of emergency health for the International Rescue Committee (IRC), which is working to contain the outbreak.
Ms Gayer said longstanding conflict in the region has made people more susceptible to disease because of poor sanitation and high levels of malnutrition and displacement, with many people now living in camps.

Treatment centres have been set up in towns that are violence free, but surveillance teams cannot access surrounding areas to check for cases, said Papys Lame of the Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA).

    "Measures are in place to be able to manage it as best as possible despite the insecurity," he said.

The virus, which spreads via bodily fluids and causes vomiting, bleeding and diarrhoea, has already spread from its epicentre in North Kivu province to neighbouring Ituri province since the first cases were detected on August 1.

Two children have already died from the disease, and centres in Beni and Mangina were treating six children infected by the disease or suspected to be.

UNICEF said it had also identified 53 orphaned children who have lost their parents to Ebola.

"The impact of the disease on children is not limited to those who have been infected or suspected," Gianfranco Rotigliano, the UNICEF representative in Congo, said in a statement.

"Many children are faced with the illness or death of their parents and loved ones, while some children have lost large parts of their families and become isolated. These children urgently need our support".
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For the latest on Ebola follow our Infectious Diseases page

The WHO is having to rely on local health workers in the "red zones" deemed too unsafe for its staff to enter, and has been unable to send in experts, regional emergencies director Ibrahima Soce Fall said.

Authorities are trying to negotiate access with the militia, the WHO director-general said earlier this week.

It has been difficult to raise support and awareness because the outbreak so closely followed another one, Mr Fall said.

"We mobilised very quickly the money needed to respond to the first outbreak, but now we are going back to the same donors and there can be this kind of fatigue," he said.

    "It is really important for the international community to know that this outbreak is more complex."

Millions died in civil wars in eastern Congo from 1996 to 2003, but Ituri province had experienced relative peace until violence erupted again this year.

Ethnic rivalries and militia fighting throughout the country have been fanned by a breakdown of state authority since President Joseph Kabila refused to step down at the end of his mandate in 2016.

Reuters

Topics: ebola, diseases-and-disorders, health, unrest-conflict-and-war, congo-the-democratic-republic-of-the

Source:   http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-08-18/congo-ebola-outbreak-kills-44-in-conflict-zone/10135226
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2018 at 4:22pm
This is the update from the WHO:

Ebola virus disease – Democratic Republic of the Congo

Disease outbreak news
17 August 2018

On 1 August 2018, the Ministry of Health (MoH) of the Democratic Republic of the Congo declared a new outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in the town of Mangina, Mabalako Health Zone, North Kivu Province. Confirmed cases have since between reported from Beni and Mandima health zones, Ituri Province; however, all confirmed exposures and transmission events to date have been linked back to the outbreak epi-centre, Mangina. North Kivu and Ituri are among the most populated provinces in the country, share borders with Uganda and Rwanda, and experience conflict and insecurity, with over one million internally displaced people and migration of refugees to neighbouring countries.

As of 15 August 2018, 78 EVD cases (51 confirmed and 27 probable), including 44 deaths, have been reported.1 Since the DON published on 9 August, 34 new confirmed cases have been reported: seven from Ituri Province (Mandima Health Zone) and 27 from North Kivu Province (one in Beni and 26 in Mabalako health zones). The 78 confirmed or probable cases reside in five health zones in North Kivu and one health zone in Ituri. The majority of cases (39 confirmed and 21 probable) have been reported from Mangina in Mabalako Health Zone (Figure 1). As of 15 August, 24 suspected cases are currently pending laboratory testing to confirm or exclude EVD.

Eight new confirmed cases among health care workers have been reported, bringing the total number of infected health care workers to 10 (nine confirmed and one probable deceased case). These health care workers were likely exposed in clinics, not Ebola treatment centres (ETCs), many of which may have been infected before the declaration of the outbreak. WHO and partners are working to increase awareness of Ebola among health care and other frontline workers, and to strengthen infection prevention and control (IPC) measures.

The MoH, WHO and partners continue to systematically monitor and rapidly investigate all alerts in other provinces and in neighbouring countries. Since the last DON was published, alerts in several provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo as well as in Uganda, Rwanda, and the Central African Republic were investigated; EVD was ruled out for all.

Source:   http://www.who.int/csr/don/17-august-2018-ebola-drc/en/
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2018 at 3:41pm
This looks more promising:


Congo’s new Ebola outbreak is hitting health care workers hard

By Jon CohenAug. 17, 2018 , 10:50 AM

Health care workers have been especially hard hit by the current outbreak of Ebola in the northeastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). To date, nine of the 51 confirmed cases of Ebola have been in people caring for the ill, says Peter Salama, an epidemiologist based in Geneva, Switzerland, who heads the response to the outbreak for the World Health Organization (WHO).

“There’s an extremely low level of knowledge and awareness about Ebola in the area,” Salama says. “Early on, the health care workers took no precautions whatsoever, and unfortunately, we’re expecting more confirmed cases from that group.”

The outbreak is the 10th in the DRC since the disease first surfaced in 1976, and though it is the first to occur in this region of the country, Salama says he was surprised how little the affected communities knew about the deadly disease. In the past, health care workers have often been heavily affected during the early days of outbreaks, but the massive Ebola outbreak that caused more than 28,000 cases in West Africa in 2014–16 brought more attention to the risks and proper responses than ever before.
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The virus has spread to seven health districts in North Kivu and Ituri, two northeastern provinces near the border with Uganda that have long been plagued by armed conflict between insurgent groups and government forces. This could vastly complicate efforts to contain its spread, as workers may have to travel with armed escorts. So far, however, security issues have not hampered the attempts to isolate the infected and to treat people, educate communities about personal hygiene precautions and safe burials, and conduct surveillance, Salama says. That's in part because the majority of cases are in a single village, Mangina, where response teams have been able to work safely.

In addition to the confirmed cases, there are 27 probable ones. So far, 44 of the probable and confirmed cases have died. An experimental vaccine that has performed well in other studies now is being used in health care workers and others who may have come in contact with confirmed cases. Salama says more than 500 people have received the vaccine so far. In addition to response teams from the DRC’s Ministry of Public Health and WHO, two nongovernmental organizations, Doctors Without Borders and the Alliance for International Medical Action, have opened Ebola treatment centers to isolate and treat patients.

Robert Redfield, head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, visited Kinshasa on Wednesday to meet with Minister of Public Health Oly Ilunga Kalenga. The next day, Kalenga led Redfield and a U.S. delegation to North Kivu, where the Americans toured an Ebola treatment center in the city of Beni.

Salama, who visited the affected area last week, led the WHO’s response to the DRC's previous outbreak, which officially ended 1 week before this one surfaced. “It’s taking all the partners a little longer to get moving in this outbreak to be at the scale required to really deal with what is one of the more complex outbreaks of Ebola we’ve had in recent years,” says Salama, noting that they badly need more financial support from international donors. “This is a really tough one.”

Source:   http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/08/congo-s-new-ebola-outbreak-hitting-health-care-workers-hard
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2018 at 3:39pm
This ts the Daily Star paper - IMHO a comic bit here is the report anyway:

Ebola outbreak cases expected to SOAR as victims can’t be helped in ‘NO-GO ZONES’

THE cases of deadly Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are expected to increase as aid workers cannot access affected regions deemed to be “no-go zones”.



The World Health Organisation (WHO) is becoming increasingly concerned about Congo’s current outbreak of Ebola, which has killed an estimated 44 people.

Health officials have not been able to identify all people exposed to the lethal virus in the African nation's North Kivu region, where security issues are stopping aid workers reaching some areas.

The North Kivu has been ravaged by armed ethnic conflict between Congo’s military and the Hutu Power group Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) since 2004.

Meanwhile, health authorities in Congo are scrambling to contain the outbreak as neighbouring countries Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan and Uganda are braced for it to spread across borders.

A total of 78 Ebola cases have been confirmed and 1,500 people have been identified as contacts of infected people, according to official WHO figures.

"We don't know if we are having all transmission chains identified,” WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic said in a press conference in Geneva.   

“We expect to see more cases as a result of earlier infections and infection developing into illness.”

On Tuesday WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus expressed concerns that the virus would be harder to contain after visiting North Kivu, where the outbreak is concentrated.

“Before I went there I was really worried because of the different nature of the Ebola outbreak in eastern DRC,” he told a press conference.

“But after the visit I am actually more worried because of what we have observed there first hand.”

He said the conditions in North Kivu, where around 100 armed groups are operating, make it more likely that the deadly hemorrhagic fever will spread.

“The environment is really conducive for Ebola to transmit freely,” said Dr Tedros. “This is a very dangerous outbreak.

“What makes the outbreak in eastern DRC or northern Kivu more dangerous is there is a security challenge – there is active conflict in that area.”

The challenges of containment will alarm health officials after an unprecedented outbreak of the disease between 2014 and 2016 killed more than 11,000 people across western Africa.

Cases of the disease, a type of viral hemorrhagic fever, were confirmed in Britain, Italy, Spain and the United States, where one person died.

The epidemic of 2014 to 2016 was the most widespread outbreak of Ebola in history, plaguing countries such as Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone with death and economic woe.

In June 2016, the outbreak was officially declared over, but the virus is still present in several African countries.

People who remain most at risk are those who care for infected people or handle their blood or fluid, such as hospital workers, laboratory workers and family members, according to NHS guidance.

To date, the latest outbreak is the ninth time Congo has been struck by the disease, which kills between 25-90% of those affected.

The most recent outbreak of Ebola in Congo was declared contained in July 2017, having killed four out of the eight it infected.

Source:   https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/world-news/723874/ebola-outbreak-virus-2018-congo-symptoms-who-latest-news
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 17 2018 at 12:50pm
Congo Ebola outbreak: 78 cases, 44 deaths, 10 health workers infected

Updated 1547 GMT (2347 HKT) August 17, 2018

(CNN)There have been 78 cases of Ebola reported in the current outbreak in North Kivu and Ituri provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo as of Wednesday, the World Health Organization said Friday.
Of those cases, 51 are confirmed, and 27 are probable. This includes 44 deaths.
The reported cases are in five health zones in North Kivu and one health zone in Ituri, but all of the cases are linked to the "outbreak epi-center" in Mangina, the agency said.

In addition, 10 health care workers have become infected with the disease. Nine of those cases are confirmed, and the one probable case is a worker who died.
"These health care workers were likely exposed in clinics, not Ebola treatment centres (ETCs), many of which may have been infected before the declaration of the outbreak," according to a statement from WHO.
The agency is working to "increase awareness of Ebola among health care and other frontline workers, and to strengthen infection prevention and control (IPC) measures."
The affected provinces share a border with Uganda and Rwanda and are densely populated. Ongoing conflict and violence in the area pose security concerns for those working to contain the outbreak.
This is the 10th outbreak in Congo, where the virus is endemic.

This outbreak is now bigger than the previous outbreak in Equateur province that was declared over July 24. During that outbreak, 53 cases were reported, including 29 deaths, according to Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of WHO. Health officials said last week that the two outbreaks are not related.
The viral hemorrhagic fever is transmitted from person to person by infected bodily fluids such as blood, saliva, feces and breast milk. It is highly infectious but not highly contagious.
Vaccination has begun in North Kivu province among health care workers and some residents.

Source:   https://edition.cnn.com/2018/08/17/health/congo-ebola-outbreak-update-bn/index.html
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 15 2018 at 2:53am
Health officials are "worried" as the outbreak seems to be spreading. You can read a report on that here:   https://edition.cnn.com/2018/08/14/health/congo-ebola-outbreak-update/index.html

Also there is a new ebola drug about to be trialled in the area. Details on that development are available here:   https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/new-drug-for-ebola-outbreak-2bt6cg59n
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 12 2018 at 7:16am

Health chiefs issue ‘EBOLA ALERT’ amid fears outbreak about to CROSS BORDERS

HEALTH chiefs have issued an ebola alert amid fears the outbreak as about to cross borders – with four new cases confirmed.
By Henry Holloway / Published 11th August 2018



Ugandan medical authorities have issued a “high risk” alert spurred by the continuing outbreak of the Ebola haemorrhagic fever in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Heath secretary Dr Diana Atwine issued to the warning on Twitter – including details of symptoms and fact sheets about treating ebola.

It comes as authorities in the Congo continue to detect new cases of the killer disease.

And health bosses are preparing to deploy an experimental treatment in a bid to curb the ebola outbreak.

Health workers are being vaccinated as they continue to fight the infection.
r Atwine urged people in Uganda to share the warning – revealing a phone line to report cases.

She said: “There is a confirmed Ebola outbreak in the [Congo] putting Uganda at high risk.

“Ebola is a serious disease that kills many with a very short period of time.

“The general public should remain clam and be on alert."

Source and full article:   www.dailystar.co.uk/news/world-news/722708/ebola-outbreak-africa-uganda-congo-warning-death-toll-vaccine-borders-threat-alert-symptom
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3 000 doses is not much if they have to change the strategy to blanket vaccinations.

This does look like it might get out of hand, despite Congo's good reputation in handling Ebola outbreaks.
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Wonder why this outbreak is causing such concern? It's in a war zone!

BENI, Congo (AP) ” In a new reminder of the dangers in containing an Ebola outbreak in a war zone, suspected rebels killed seven people overnight in northeastern Congo and sent residents fleeing, an official said Saturday.

Global health officials have warned that combating this virus outbreak is complicated by multiple armed groups in the mineral-rich region and a restless population that includes 1 million displaced people and scores of refugees leaving for nearby Uganda every week.

The insecurity means health workers might have to change a vaccination strategy that proved successful in Congo’s previous Ebola outbreak, the World Health Organization’s emergency preparedness chief Dr. Peter Salama said Saturday.

The so-called “ring vaccination” approach of first vaccinating health workers, contacts of Ebola victims and their contacts might have to give way to the approach of vaccinating everyone in a certain geographic area such as a village or neighborhood. That would require a larger number of vaccine doses.

Vaccinations began Wednesday in the current outbreak, which was declared on Aug. 1 and has killed 11 people in the densely populated region. WHO has said more than 3,000 Ebola vaccine doses are available in Congo.

While Congo’s previous Ebola outbreak, declared over barely a week before the current one began, set off alarm by spreading to a city of more than 1 million on the other side of the country, the current outbreak comes with the threat of armed attack.

The overnight assault that killed seven people in Mayi-Moya, about 40 kilometers (24 miles) from Beni city, was likely carried out by rebels with the Allied Democratic Forces, the administrator of Beni territory, Donat Kibwana, told The Associated Press. The rebels have killed more than 1,500 people in and around Beni in less than two years.

The rebels sent the local population fleeing, Kibwana said. Beni residents already had been shaken by the discovery on Tuesday of 14 bodies of civilians who had been seized by suspected ADF rebels.

The latest attack occurred as the WHO director-general, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, was visiting the area to see the response to the Ebola outbreak, which is being carried out in some cases under armed escort.

“The active conflict in the area is a barrier to control Ebola,” Tedros said in a Twitter post Saturday night. “I call on all warring parties to provide secure access to all responders serving affected populations & saving lives.”

United Nations peacekeepers, Congolese police and at times Congolese troops have been traveling with convoys of health workers as they fan out to contain the outbreak. Hospitals are guarded by Congolese police and military police.

“This will be a highly complex operation because it is occurring in an area that has been embroiled in armed conflict for 20 years,” said Hanna Leskinen, a spokeswoman for the International Committee of the Red Cross. “People are regularly moving as waves of violence force new communities to flee. This makes tracing infected cases much harder.” Health care workers may be forced to flee as well, she said.

Parts of North Kivu province, where most of the Ebola cases have been reported, have been inaccessible to aid groups because of the fighting, Leskinen said.

“It is critical that the disease is contained before it spreads to areas where there is more active fighting or it will be incredibly challenging to reach those in need (and) ensure safe vaccination campaigns,” she said. That includes keeping the vaccines at the optimal temperature of minus 70 degrees Celsius (minus 158 degrees Fahrenheit), a challenge in a region with hot temperatures and unreliable power supplies.

So far, Congo’s health ministry has said 48 cases of hemorrhagic fever have been reported in this outbreak, 21 of them confirmed as Ebola.

Nearly 1,000 people are being monitored. Screenings for the virus are being carried out at the heavily traveled border; officials have said travel restrictions are not necessary.

This is Congo’s tenth outbreak of Ebola, which is spread via contact with bodily fluids of those infected, including the dead. There is no licensed treatment, and the virus can be fatal in up to 90 percent of cases, depending on the strain.
source:   http://www.gainesville.com/news/20180811/congos-latest-ebola-outbreak-taking-place-in-war-zone
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Ebola vaccination begins in North Kivu
8 August 2018 News Release
Mangina/Geneva


The Ministry of Public Health of the Democratic Republic of the Congo today announced the launch of Ebola vaccinations for high risk populations in North Kivu province.

The vaccinations have begun just one week after the announcement of a second outbreak of Ebola this year in the country. A total of 44 cases have been reported so far, of which 17 have been confirmed.

Work has begun to prepare ring vaccination in the Mangina health area, 30km from the town of Beni.

The provincial health minister and the provincial coordinator of the Expanded Programme on Immunization were the first to be vaccinated. They were followed by first line health workers from the Mangina health centre, who had been in contact with people who were confirmed cases of Ebola.

“Vaccines are an important tool in the fight against Ebola. This is why it has been a priority to move them rapidly into place to begin protecting our health workers and the affected population,” said Dr Oly Ilunga, Minister of Health of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

A total of 3,220 doses of the rVSV-ZEBOV Ebola vaccine are currently available in the country, while supplementary doses have been requested. While the vaccine goes through the licensing process, an agreement between Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and Merck, the developer of the vaccine, ensures that additional investigational doses of the vaccine are available.

“The Democratic Republic of the Congo has once again demonstrated strong leadership in its early response to this outbreak,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO). “Ebola is aggressive. We must respond more aggressively. Beginning the vaccination so quickly is a key early step.”

WHO has provided logistical support for the establishment of the cold chain and sent supplies needed for the vaccinations, in addition to supporting the negotiation of protocols with the manufacturer and national authorities, and supporting the deployment of vaccination experts from Guinea to work alongside national staff, who began the vaccination.

"We are proud of the regional solidarity demonstrated by the vaccination efforts, and confident that the strong capacity of the African region will once again be demonstrated during the response to this outbreak," said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa.
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Vaccinations have begun in the province of those at high exposure risk.

Source:   http://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/en/

Hmmm.... That hyperlink does not seem to be working, so if anyone can be bothered to cut and paste it, here it is unopened.   http://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/en/
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 09 2018 at 4:13am
Update:  

New Ebola outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo: 43 infected, 36 dead

Updated 1627 GMT (0027 HKT) August 8, 2018

Source and full article:   https://edition.cnn.com/2018/08/07/world/dr-congos-health-ministry-reports-new-ebola-deaths-in-latest-outbreak/index.html

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 07 2018 at 3:02pm

Ebola death toll climbs to 34 as health workers struggle to contain latest outbreak in Congo

At least 34 people are reported to have died in a fresh outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo, including one healthcare worker, the World Health Organization says, as officials scramble to contain the deadly virus in the restive eastern part of the country.

As of August 6, 43 Ebola cases have been reported primarily in North Kivu province, an area that has been beleaguered by decades of violence, with an additional 33 suspected cases currently undergoing laboratory tests.

It is the tenth Ebola outbreak in the country, and news of the most recent cases came just days after the previous outbreak in the DRC was declared over on July 24, in which 33 people also died.

While there is no evidence yet that confirms the recent outbreaks are related, a connection can’t yet be ruled out, said World Health Organization spokesperson Tarik Jašarević.

The conditions in the area of the new outbreak are extremely challenging. Several armed militia groups have been fighting for control of mineral-rich North Kivu for years, a conflict that forced 1.7 million people to flee their homes in 2017. In December, at least 15 United Nations peacekeepers from Tanzania were killed in the region.

Today than one million displaced people live in the area, with residents and traders routinely moving across local borders with Rwanda and Uganda.

All of this makes for a logistical nightmare for the people trying to trace the movement of one of the world’s most ruthless viruses.

In the DRC’s last outbreak in western Equateur province, there were also “massive logistical constraints,” says Mr Jašarević.

But workers were still able to travel hundreds of miles by motorbike to trace people who had come into contact with the virus, a vital part of its containment. In North Kivu, however, the same work may have to do be done with armed escorts when traveling outside cities.

“The prolonged humanitarian crisis and deterioration of the security situation is expected to hinder response to this outbreak,” says Mr Jašarević.

Médecins Sans Frontières, which has played a key role in the Ebola virus outbreaks that were first identified in 2014, says it has responded to the most recent outbreak.

“We have teams on site, currently setting up treatment centres and supporting the existing local health facilities in infection prevention and control, in order to help limit the possible spread of the disease and ensure continuity of care for the general population,” an MSF press officer in Johannesburg said on Monday.

After the virus was identified in Equateur in May, an experimental vaccine manufactured by the American pharmaceutical giant Merck was used early in the outbreak. It may have contributed to the outbreak’s quick containment and relatively low death rate. Between 2014 and 2016, more than 11,300 people died from the virus in West Africa.

There are still 3,200 doses of the vaccine that are currently be stored in the capital Kinshasa, and WHO says it can mobilize 300,000 more doses at short notice if required. The government has to approve the vaccine’s distribution by WHO before it can be given to people.

Health workers are now rushing to set up a cold chain to start vaccinating people in eastern part of the country on Wednesday, the DRC’s health ministry has said.

But the biggest constraint, says Mr Jašarević of WHO, will be “security and access issues and that ability to really determine the contacts of contacts of contacts.”

FAQ | Ebola

What does Ebola do?

Symptoms begin with fever, muscle pain and a sore throat and can escalate rapidly to vomiting, diarrhoea and internal and external bleeding. The average EVD case fatality rate is around 50% although they have varied from 25% to 90% in past outbreaks. Health workers are at serious risk of contracting the disease and need to wear a protective suit covering their entire body.

How is the virus transmitted?

The virus is introduced into the human population through close contact with the bodily fluids of infected animals such as fruit bats and chimpanzees.

The virus spreads through human-to-human transmission, with infection resulting from direct contact with infected indviduals, through broken skin or mucous membranes, and indirect contact with objects contaminated with bodily fluids, such as door handles and telephones. The virus cannot be spread through the air

Health workers who have close contact with infected patients are particularly at risk of contracting the disease. Burial ceremonies that involve direct contact with the body of the deceased can also lead to the spread of Ebola.

Is the disease treatable?

There is no cure for the disease and treatment involves rehydration or intravenous fluids. Early treatment improves a patient’s chances of survival. There is no cure although during the Ebola outbreak in West Africa in 2014 anti viral treatments were developed. A vaccine has also been developed and will be used in the latest outbreak to protect direct contacts of infected patients.

Source:   https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/08/07/ebola-death-toll-climbs-34-health-workers-struggle-contain-latest/
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 05 2018 at 2:16am
BBC news just made their first TV announcement on this second outbreak.  They say it is right next to a refugee camp.

Howzat for upping the risk factors!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tiger_deF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 04 2018 at 3:01pm
This outbreak seems much more concerning than the one before. It appears to have been going on for months and the scale is already as large, if not larger. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 04 2018 at 2:05pm
There are 13 confirmed cases in the latest outbreak/re-outbreak and 33 suspected deaths - cause yet to be confirmed.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Technophobe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 02 2018 at 11:56pm
........................................ ' Or breed with something else, Carbon.

Mystery disease wreaks havoc

02 August 2018

Mystery disease wreaks havoc

An unknown disease is on the increase in the Mabalako health zone, 30 km South-West of Beni in North Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DCR). The DRC Ministry of Health (MoH) and World Health Organization (WHO) sent a team to assess the situation on 31 June and begin laboratory analysis. A humanitarian health partner also sent an evaluation and response team. Laboratory results are anticipated in the coming days and WHO human resources are available to be deployed in 24 hours. Preventative measures have been taken by medical staff in Mangina to avoid the disease spreading.


Source:   https://www.itij.com/story/114441/mystery-disease-wreaks-havoc

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote carbon20 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: August 02 2018 at 2:37pm
it will never be over ................

hopefully it will become airbourne and knock 75% of us off........
12 Monkeys...............
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............................  'And as if that were not bad enough;  IT'S NOT OVER!

EBOLA OUTBREAK: Killer disease WARNING as fresh cases discovered - 'We need calm'

AN Ebola virus outbreak has been confirmed in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo's North Kivu province, the country's Governor has confirmed.

The health ministry said four cases of the virus have been confirmed, while 20 deaths from hemorrhagic fever in and around Mangina, a densely populated town 30km southwest of the city of Beni and 100km from the Ugandan border have also been recorded. 

A team of 12 experts from the health ministry will arrive in Beni on Thursday to set up a mobile lab.

Julien Paluku wrote on Twitter: "Ebola virus conformed in North Kivu province.

"The Minister of Health just announced it after confirmation of the analysis at the INRB (Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale).

"I call for calm and prudence."

World Health Organisation chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a tweet that it has started moving staff and supplies to the affected area. 

He said: "Ebola is a constant threat in DRC. What adds to our confidence in the country's ability to respond is the transparency they have displayed once again.

"We will fight this one as we did the last.”

On Monday, health ministry said it had foound 25 cases of fever near the town of Beni and that samples had been sent to the capital Kinshasa for testing.  

It added that there is no evidence that the new Ebola cases are linked to a previous outbreak, which began in April and occurred over 2,500 kilometres away.

Last week, DR Congo confirmed the end of a separate outbreak that killed 33 people in the northwest. 

Congolese and international health officials deployed an experimental vaccine that helped contain its spread after it reached a large river port city.

In May, international experts said there has been a massive change in the urgency of the Congolese government to highlight the risks of the virus spreading, which was downplayed during the 2014 Western African epidemic.

Protection were distributed to local hospitals and traveller screening commenced, even before the first cases of the contagious virus were confirmed by health officials.

DR Congo health minister Oly Ilunga had said: "The government knew this outbreak presented a higher risk than last year's (smaller) outbreak due to the fact the health workers were among the first victims.

"All the major international organisations have worked in better alignment with the government's Ebola response plan."

This is the central African country's 10th Ebola outbreak since 1976, when the virus was discovered near the eponymous river in the north.

Ebola, believed to be spread over long distances by bats, causes hemorrhagic fever, vomiting and diarrhea. 

It is spread through direct contact with body fluids, and often spreads to humans via infected bush meat.

Between 2013 and 2016, an ebola outbreak concentrated in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea killed at least 11,300 people.


Source:   https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/997484/ebola-outbreak-dr-congo-ebola-outbreak-latest

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