EBOLA: Senate calls for end to strike in health sector

WHO sends first doses of experimental vaccine to tackle Congo Ebola outbreak

WHO sends first doses of experimental vaccine to tackle Congo Ebola outbreak

This is the DRC's ninth EVD outbreak since the virus was discovered in the country in 1976.

Thousands of doses of the experimental Ebola vaccine have arrived in Democratic Republic of Congo's capital amid the latest outbreak of the deadly disease, the health ministry said on Wednesday.

She said that recent reports by the World Health Organisation (WHO) showed that the disease was back in neighbouring Congo with 19 deaths and 39 infected casualties recorded so far.

Tinubu who is Chairman, Senate Committee on Environment said the tide, as at then, was stemmed by quick response of the government. There is no specific treatment for Ebola.

The Senate also urged the Minister of Interior to take necessary steps to check immigration, just as it asked the Minister of Health to ensure alertness to combat whatever cases that might arise and get Ebola vaccines ready for an emergency.

Orly Ilunga, the Congolese Minister of Health, who received the vaccine in Kinshasa, indicated that the batch received from WHO will be stored first in the laboratory of the National Institute of Biomedical Research in Kinshasa, before being transported to the health zone of Bikoro, in the province of Equateur in the north-west of the country where the Ebola epidemic had been declared since May 8th. "The remaining 12 cases are suspected..."

Bikoro Health Zone reported the highest number of cases (n=31), followed by Iboko (n=8) and Mbandaka (n=2) Health Zones. Three nurses are among the suspected cases and one is among the dead. It involves vaccinating voluntary contacts, contacts of those contacts and health care and other front-line workers.

"Over the weekend, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) reported seven more suspected cases of Ebola, raising the totals from April 4 through May 13 to 39 confirmed, suspected, and probable cases, including 19 deaths, for a case-fatality rate of 49 percent. So we are very concerned". The disease killed eight people in the country previous year. World Health Organization has reported 23 deaths among the 42 cases as medical teams try to contain the hemorrhagic fever in Equateur province.

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