Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey

DRC: Ebola!

An outbreak of the deadly Ebola haemorrhagic fever has killed around fifty per cent of the infected individuals in Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Health Ministry is working with international emergency services trying to stem the outbreak. 52 cases, 25 fatalities...Ebola is back.

Ebola haemorrhagic fever is perhaps one of the most horrific diseases Mother Nature conjured up, the victims suddenly spurting blood from their eyes, ears, skin, mouths, nose in massive haemorrhages. It is enough to have skin contact with an infected person for the virus to pass from person to person.

The World Health Organization has confirmed that on October 24, the DR Congo Health Ministry was able to confirm 52 cases of Ebola haemorrhagic fever, 35 of these confirmed by laboratory and a further 17 cases probable, of which 25 individuals died (12 confirmed in laboratory, 13 probable).

The area affected is Haut-Uélé district in Orientale Province, more specifically the health zones of Isiro and Viadana. The local health authorities are working closely with international partners, carrying out surveillance, tracing contacts of diseased persons, implementing infection prevention programmes and control in healthcare facilities. There is work being undertaken in mobilising teams to spread public awareness campaigns - in many parts of Africa, the relatives of a deceased person say "goodbye" by placing the hand on the body - and that is how Ebola is spread.

The Public Health Agency of Canada has set up a field laboratory in Isiro and awareness programmes are being extended to the neighbouring areas of Bedhe, Nakwapongo, Rungu and Ngosaku.



WHO Ebola fever factsheet


Timofei Belov