Monday, 25 March, 2019

No Filipinos affected by Ebola outbreak in DR Congo - DFA

Ebola outbreak in Congo surpasses 600 cases amid more violence Doctor Monitored for Ebola in Nebraska Hospital
Celia Hoffman | 05 January, 2019, 00:43

"Ebola is unforgiving, and disruptions give the virus the advantage".

The Philippine government on Friday said no Filipinos are infected by the outbreak of Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo).

Ebola - a tropical fever which first appeared in 1976 in Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo - can be transmitted to humans from wild animals. On Wednesday the country's health ministry reported 608 Ebola cases and 268 deaths since the latest outbreak began in August. So far, 368 people have died from the disease, putting the fatality rate to about 60 percent.

"There is a risk that all this work that is being put in place, and WHO has more than 380 people on the ground, alongside hundreds of people deployed by the Ministry of Health and other partners, that this effort may be put in danger if we are not able to go and put response activities in the community", Jasarevic said.

The Ebola outbreak has been raging in Congo since August previous year. Surrounding provinces, including the neighboring Ituri, also reported cases of Ebola.

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These preventative measures said Mr. Ghebreyesus, speaking alongside the Ugandan Prime Minister in the capital Kampala, "will go a long way" towards saving the lives of health workers; adding that WHO is "really grateful for the government's commitment and support".

Last week an unidentified American doctor who was exposed to Ebola while treating patients in the DRC was transported to the United States to be monitored. Since then, the virus has been infecting people from time to time, leading to an outbreak in several African countries.

The recent presidential election has also raised concerns over the possibility of the cross-border spread of Ebola as hundreds of refugees fled to Uganda.

Some Congolese, however, who have been seeking refuge in Uganda were forced to turn back after refusing to undergo screening for Ebola. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the worldwide public health agency, is hopeful that the outbreak will be "brought under control as soon as possible".

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