Dead, 39 Sick in New Outbreak: Death Rate at 50 Percent

Posted May 15, 2018

Peter Salama, deputy director-general of WHO's emergency preparedness and response, said: "The number of suspected, probable and confirmed cases is significant, so we are very concerned, and we are planning for all scenarios, including the worst-case scenario".

As STAT News' Helen Branswell notes, the World Health Organization plans to employ a "ring vaccination" process, administering the vaccine to anyone who may have had contact with the infected individuals.

This would mean that when a new Ebola case is diagnosed, all people who might have been in recent contact with them are traced and vaccinated to try and prevent the disease's spread.

M-decins Sans Fronti-res has set up four five-bed mobile isolation units to increase the hospital bed capacity in Bikoro, which is now 15 beds.

Three health professionals have already been infected with suspected Ebola, one of whom has died.

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In Congo, vaccines will also be administered to local and global health care workers and front-line workers in both affected areas as well as the regions expected to be at risk should the outbreak continue to spread.

The Democratic Republic of Congo and United Nations agencies began deploying emergency teams of specialists over the weekend to try to prevent the spread of an Ebola epidemic suspected to have infected more than 30 people, they said on Sunday.

"Because it is an experimental vaccine, there are several steps to observe", Jasarevik said.

It said 393 people who identified as contacts of Ebola patients were being followed up. Tedros met with the president of the DRC, Joseph Kabila, and the minister of health, Oly Ilunga Kalenga, MD, to review the steps taken so far.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has said that Nigeria's friendly match against the DR Congo is not under threat in spite of the Ebola outbreak in the country.

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He said World Health Organization has an agreement with DRC including all the necessary registration and import permits.

The unlicensed vaccine, manufactured by Merck, could be used as early as next Monday, according to Reuters.

The director-general noted that DRC has lots of experiencing combating Ebola.

It marks the ninth time Ebola has been recorded in the country.

The WHO and others have deployed many experts to the area, including epidemiologists, people skilled at contact tracing, and anthropologists who are already learning about local customs. The virus is transmitted to people from wild animals and spreads in the human population through human-to-human transmission.

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