Nigeria says will prevent Ebola spread from DR Congo


Congo's health ministry on Tuesday, May 8, described the fresh outbreak as a "public health emergency with global impact".

The WHO has also established its Incident Management System that would help build a workforce centered on helping out with the current EVD outbreak.

While it is feared that the deadly Ebola outbreak in Congo which had claimed 17 lives by Thursday, the Government has assured travelers and citizens that the country is safe and that all measures are being looked at to contain possible virus spread.

The outbreak area is 15 hours by motorbike from the closest town and has "absolutely dire" infrastructure, Salama said, so the World Health Organization wants to send in 20-40 experts by helicopter this weekend and then clear an airstrip for more supplies.

Salama also said there was no evidence of a link between the outbreak and eight deaths that occurred in January and February in the same area, which had not been confirmed as Ebola. The government immediately alerted the people about the outbreak.

He said the possibility of worldwide spread of the disease was still considered "low", but that the situation was constantly being evaluated.

Ebola symptoms usually start within two to 21 days of becoming infected.

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According to Adewole, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has begun the coordination of a national working group to assess and manage the risk posed by the virus in the DRC to Nigeria.

"This situation worries us and requires a very immediate and energetic response", said Minister of Health, Oly Ilunga. Fatality rates have varied from 25% to 90% in past outbreaks, with an average fatality rate around 50%.

This is the ninth Ebola outbreak in DRC since 1976, when the deadly disease was first identified.

The 2014 West Africa Ebola outbreak infected more than 28,600 and killed more than 11,300.

The WHO is meanwhile awaiting a green light from DRC authorities to begin a vaccination campaign in the area, using an available stockpile of an experimental vaccine.

An Ebola vaccine that worked well in a clinical trial in Guinea held in 2015, has yet to be approved by regulatory authorities but could be used under emergency protocols.

Deputy Director-General of Emergency Preparedness and Response Peter Salama on Friday told a regular United Nations briefing in Geneva that he hoped the Democratic Republic of Congo would give the green light within days for the deployment of an experimental vaccine, but warned that the drug was complicated to use and was not a magic bullet.