Ebola Outbreak Current Affairs - 2020

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Ebola emerges again in Congo

Health officials in Eastern Congo recently documented the first relapse of current Ebola epidemic. The Ebola outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has so far infected more than 3,300 people and killed more than 2,200 since the middle of 2018, making it the second-worst on record.

According to World Health Organisation (WHO), this recent relapse happened in Aloya district where a motorcycle taxi operator is said to have come into contact with 33 people is potentially the cause of 11 new confirmed Ebola cases in past week.

What is Ebola?

Ebola is a rare but deadly virus which was first identified in 1976 by researchers sent to investigate an ailment that was killing victims in a remote part of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The researchers team named the condition after the local Ebola river.

Ebola causes Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), a rare and deadly disease in people and nonhuman primates. Ebola is triggered by a virus- probably picked up from an infected bat or non-human primate – that causes blood vessels to leak and can end in organ failure and death. Ebola has killed more than 11,000 people between 2013 and 2016.

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DRC plans surveillance, vaccination training to tackle Ebola

Democratic Republic of Congo has been scaled up its fight against Ebola in country after World Health Organization (WHO), the global health body sounded an alarm over its outbreak. WHO declared disease an international health emergency after a Ebola case was confirmed in Goma, a densely populated eastern city that borders Rwanda.

Key Highlights

The discovery of Ebola case in Goma was triggering point for WHO against declaring the outbreak a global emergency as it signaled a change- inside Goma lies an international airport, which some health experts described as gateway to rest of the world.

As per WHOs’ Emergency Operations reporting over the course of these outbreak, people traveling from Goma, including across border into Rwanda, everyone’s being checked. Congolese supported by international committees have tested over 70 million travelers.

Strategy: As a team led by veteran Ebola researcher Jean-Jacques Muyembe, first thing is to train young people of decision (the strategy) so they would be in charge of vaccination, of surveillance and then involve population of Benin, of Mangina, to follow the strategy we will implement there.

International Community and DRC government have come up with a program aimed at strengthening response to Ebola outbreak over next 6 months, however they are calling on world to contribute more money to help contain deadly disease that has killed more than 1,700 people since August 2018.

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