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Pre-emptive Ebola security zone at Wangata hospital in Mbandaka Pre-emptive Ebola security zone at Wangata hospital in Mbandaka  (AFP or licensors)

DRC Bishops praise WHO’s response to the Ebola outbreak

The Democratic Republic of Congo’s Catholic Bishops have praised the World Health Organisation (WHO)’s timely response to the Ebola outbreak in that country. They have since called on the Congolese government and NGOs not to relent in their efforts to combat the disease.

Vatican News Africa Service – Vatican city

Limiting the spread of the disease

The Archbishop of Kisangani and President of the National Episcopal Conference of Congo, (CENCO) Marcel Utembi Tapa appealed to WHO, Congolese authorities as well as NGOs to do all they can “to limit the spread of the disease and guarantee the safety and health of the population."

Archbishop Utembi Tapa expressed his condolences to the bereaved families and invited them not to give in to despair in spite of the difficult situation confronting them.

WHO monitoring situation

A Wednesday update from WHO said it is closely monitoring the Ebola outbreak in the DRC and would be able to tell, in next few weeks, whether or not the epidemic is expanding to urban areas or if it can be kept under control.

WHO announced Friday that Congo’s latest Ebola outbreak does not yet warrant being declared a global health emergency. Nevertheless, the risk to the public in the Democratic Republic of the Congo remains “very high.”

Ebola Vaccine

As of Monday this week, WHO’s DRC Ebola Situation Report said the total number of cases was at 58. The figure includes 27 deaths. There are also nine suspect cases and 21 probable ones.

In the meantime, Vaccination of high-risk populations began earlier this week in the affected area of the country. More than 7,500 doses of the Ebola vaccine have been deployed in the northwestern Equatorial Province. Most of the cases are in Bikoro, a remote rural town. Four confirmed cases are in Mbandaka, the provincial capital with a population of over 1 million people.

 

24 May 2018, 16:01