Webinar :Register now for Commodity Ki Paathshala webinar on ‘FPOs & Agriculture Marketing-The Beginning of a New Era’ on January 22, 4pm
you are here: HomeNewsWorld

DR Congo reports fresh Ebola outbreak amid measles epidemic, COVID-19 pandemic

The 11th Ebola outbreak has come just weeks before it had hoped to declare the end of the 10th in the east.

June 02, 2020 / 12:43 PM IST
File image

File image

A fresh outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus has flared up in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a country that was already fighting with the world’s largest measles epidemic as well as the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO)’s news release, DR Congo announced on June 1 that a new outbreak of Ebola virus disease is occurring in Wangata health zone, Mbandaka, in Équateur province.

DR Congo’s Ministry of Health has informed that six Ebola cases have been detected in Wangata so far. Of these, four have died while two are alive and under care. Three of these six cases have been confirmed with laboratory testing, said WHO.

“This is a reminder that COVID-19 is not the only health threat people face,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.

Although much of our attention is on the pandemic, WHO is continuing to monitor and respond to many other health emergencies, said Dr Adhanom.


COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

View more
How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

View more

This is the 11th Ebola outbreak in the vast central African country's history since the virus was first discovered there in 1976.

The outbreak has come just weeks before it had hoped to declare the end of the 10th in the east. DR Congo’s outbreak of Ebola, in North Kivu, South Kivu and Ituri provinces, is in its final stages. On May 14, the Ministry of Health began the 42-day countdown to the declaration of the end of that outbreak.

Before this, the city of Mbandaka and its surrounding area were the site of DR Congo’s 9th Ebola outbreak, which took place from May to July 2018.

New outbreaks of Ebola are expected in the Democratic Republic of the Congo given the existence of the virus in an animal reservoir in many parts of the country, said WHO.

WHO Regional Director for Africa, Dr Matshidiso Moeti said that the recent outbreak of Ebola is happening at a challenging time. But WHO has worked over the last two years with health authorities, Africa CDC and other partners to strengthen national capacity to respond to outbreaks, the doctor said.

“To reinforce local leadership, WHO plans to send a team to support scaling up the response. Given the proximity of this new outbreak to busy transport routes and vulnerable neighbouring countries we must act quickly,” added DR Moeti.

Key figures in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

11th Ebola outbreak: Mbandaka, Équateur province.

> Ongoing. Declared on June 1

> Six cases (three confirmed, three suspected). Of these, four people died and two are under treatment


> A total of 3,195 cases have been reported, including 72 deaths (as of May 31)


> Since 2019, 369,520 measles cases and 6,779 deaths have been reported.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Jun 2, 2020 12:43 pm

stay updated

Get Daily News on your Browser