Congo Declares End of Ebola Outbreak

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    The Democratic Republic of Congo officially declared the end of the 12th Ebola outbreak. 

    About

    • The outbreak was contained using Merck’s (MRK.N) Ebola vaccine.
    • Since the outbreak declared on February 7, 2021, a total of 12 cases have been reported, including six deaths.
    • With the efforts of DRC’s response team and health partners, the epidemic has been brought under control in less than three months after its declaration.

    Ebola Disease

    • About: The Ebolavirus belongs to the virus family Filoviridae. Five species of the Ebola virus have been identified till date.
    • Occurrence: Formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever, it was first occurred in remote villages in Central Africa, near tropical rainforests in 1976.
      • The outbreak started in Guinea and then moved across land borders to Sierra Leone and Liberia.
    • Symptoms: The Ebola virus causes an acute, serious illness which is often fatal if untreated.
    • Transmission:The virus is transmitted to people from wild animals (through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected animals such as chimpanzees, gorillas, fruit bats, monkeys, forest antelope and porcupines found ill or dead or in the rainforest) and spreads in the human population through human-to-human transmission via direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected people, and with surfaces and materials (e.g. bedding, clothing) contaminated with these fluids.
      • The average case fatality rate is around 50%. Case fatality rates have varied from 25% to 90% in past outbreaks.
    • Prevention: Good outbreak control relies on case management, surveillance and contact tracing, a good laboratory service and social mobilisation.
    • Treatment: Vaccines to protect against Ebola have been developed and have been used to help control the spread of Ebola outbreaks in Guinea and in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) like Merck’s (MRK.N) Ebola vaccine.
      • Early supportive care with rehydration, symptomatic treatment improves survival.  

                                                                                                                  Image Courtesy: Aljazeera

    Source: AIR