photo source: adevarul.ro
Posted by: Mazur Rodica
News / International
18 July 2019 / 12:00
Ebola outbreak in Congo declared global health emergency
The World Health Organization on Wednesday declared the Ebola epidemic in the Democratic Republic of the Congo a public health emergency of international concern, Moldova 1 TV reports.
The declaration by an emergency committee at WHO headquarters in Geneva elevated the disease and the efforts needed to combat it to a significantly higher level of concern. Nevertheless, committee chairman Robert Steffen cautioned against overreacting to the meaning of the decision.
"This is still a regional emergency and by no way a global threat,” he said. “And, why this change of opinion … there is concern about the spread of Ebola from Goma, a gateway, even though so far no cases were newly infected in the city."
On Sunday, the first case of Ebola was discovered in Goma, a city of 2 million. pastor infected with the virus later died.
Steffen said the recurrence of intense transmission in Beni, an earlier epicenter of the disease, and the recent killings of two Ebola health workers were among other factors that fed into the committee's decision.
WHO said that since the Ebola epidemic was declared last Aug. 1, there have been more than 2,500 cases, including nearly 1,670 deaths. This is the 10th outbreak of the disease over the last four decades in the DRC. It is the second-largest outbreak after the 2014 historic epidemic in West Africa that killed more than 11,300 people.