Why Ebola keeps striking back in DR Congo?


Why Ebola keeps striking back in DR Congo?

Picture: Jean Robert N'Kengo/ReutersA health worker takes off protective clothing after visiting the isolation ward at Bikoro hospital, which received a new suspected Ebola case, in Bikoro, Democratic Republic of Congo.

World - The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that stopping the latest Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) will be a serious, tough and a costly challenge, which requires preparedness for all scenarios.

Bikoro health zone is almost 150 km from Mbandaka, capital of Equateur Province in an area of the country that is very hard to reach.

It said 393 people who identified as contacts of Ebola patients were being followed up.

The DRC Ministry of Public Health has requested WHO's support in coordinating the worldwide and NGO response to the health crisis.

EVD, formerly known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever, is a severe, often fatal illness in humans. On average, about 50% of people who become ill with Ebola die. Case fatality rates have varied from 25 to 90 percent in past outbreaks.

Furthermore, fruit bats are considered to be the main host of the disease, some analysts say, but it is also introduced into humans through close contact with the blood, organs or other bodily fluids of other infected animals, such as gorillas, antelope and porcupines.

However, NANF President, Harrison Jala, told The Guardian that, "Going ahead with the match with DR Congo is a serious risk for the country, which spent billions of naira not too long ago to contain the Ebola pandemic when a Liberian, one Mr. Sawyer, sneaked into Lagos with the virus".

Ebola caused global alarm in 2014 when the world's worst outbreak began in West Africa, killing more than 11,300 people and infecting an estimated 28,600 as it swept through Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.