The Present Crisis of Ebola in DRC is the Worst Ever

The Democratic Republic of Congo has got stuck with the worst ever outbreak of Ebola. Moreover, it is the most complex problem. Since the month of August, the authorities along with a number of partners in the country have tried to put an end to a fresh outbreak of the disease in the regions of North Kivu and Ituri. Till 21st November, there have been a total of 373 suspected cases of Ebola, out of which 347 are confirmed. Minimum of 217 people has already lost their lives. It is regarded as the deadliest of all the outbreaks ever occurred.

This time, the situation is different for a number of reasons. The population of North Kivu and Ituri is mainly subjected to have some of the highest levels of human mobility in it. There are certain warnings getting circulated regarding a wave of insecurity. Along with this, there is resistance from the community regarding vaccination and manipulation from the political fraternity to disrupt the efforts to contain the spread of the virus. All these factors make this recent outbreak, unlike any other, that has ever been seen in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is scheduled to hold a critical presidential election on 23rd December.

It was in late July this year when the provincial government of North Kivu reported 26 cases of acute hemorrhagic fever, which had resulted in 20 deaths. There were six specimens of blood sent to the Institute National de Recherché Biomedical in the capital city of Kinshasa. There, four samples were tested positive for the Ebola virus. On 1st August 2018, DRC’s Ministry of Health made the official announcement of an outbreak. The epicenter of this outbreak is in Beni, North Kivu. According to the World Health Organization, close to 300 medical specialists have been assigned to the country for supporting the rescue plan. Around 32,500 people, who are at risk, have been given vaccines. These total numbers of people include 10,600 health workers and 8600 children. On 24th November, the government along with the WHO said that they would soon be conducting clinical trials to measure the safety and effectiveness of the type of drugs used on Ebola patients. Through this, they wish to find out the most effective method of treating the virus.

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