DRC declares Ebola outbreak over
The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) declared its two-month Ebola outbreak officially over yesterday after 42 days without recording a new case of the disease.
The outbreak in the DRC’s remote northeastern forests, a record eighth for the country where the disease was first discovered in 1976, killed four out of the eight people infected, Health Minister Oly Ilunga said.
“I declare on this day, at midnight, the end of the outbreak of the haemorrhagic fever of the Ebola virus in DRC,” Ilunga said.
DRC health authorities approved the use of a new experimental vaccine but ultimately declined to deploy it due to the small scale of the outbreak and logistical challenges.
Health officials say northeastern DRC’s remote geography, combined with the country’s experience fighting the disease, allowed them to gain the upper hand quickly.
The latest outbreak came a year after the end of the virus’ deadliest episode in west Africa, which killed more than 11 300 people and infected about 28 600 as it swept through Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, causing alarm across the world.