19 dead, 39 infected so far in Congo Ebola outbreak

19 dead, 39 infected so far in Congo Ebola outbreak

19 dead, 39 infected so far in Congo Ebola outbreak

The WHO said it has obtained 4,000 doses of Ebola vaccine and is preparing for deployment in the DRC, its Africa director said on Sunday.

Ebola is a highly infectious disease spread through contact with even small amounts of bodily fluid of an infected person.

The declaration followed laboratory results that confirmed two cases of the disease.

On Sunday, a World Health Organization delegation including the agency's director, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Gehbreyesus, visited the town of Bikoro, the center of the current outbreak.

Moeti said 362 contacts had been traced of those who had fallen sick - a necessary precursor to deploying the vaccines. The biggest worry since the epidemic was identified has been that it could spread there.

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They said the Congolese government has reacted quickly to the crisis, but expressed concern about Bikoro's proximity to the provincial capital Mbandaka, a city of about one million people. Some deaths occurring as early as January have not yet been linked to the epidemic. It is a hemorrhagic fever, marked by spontaneous bleeding from internal organs and, in most cases, death. "Work is under way to determine the beginning of this epidemic".

DRC is recording the latest cases of the virus after over a year since the outbreak killed four people.

Congo suffered eight previous Ebola epidemics. Meanwhile information about the outbreak in towns like Bikoro, Iboko and Wangata health zones in Equateur province was still limited, according to the WHO.

"The anxiety expressed by the health minister was enough for every right-thinking Nigerian to cancel all engagements with citizens of that country until the World Health Organisation (WHO) declares DRC free from Ebola".

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