"DRC Ebola News (1/17/20)." CSIS Commission on Strengthening America's Health Security, Center for Strategic and International Studies, January 17, 2020. Accessed February 21, 2020. https://healthsecurity.csis.org/articles/drc-ebola-news-1-17-20/
There was 1 new case reported on January 17th.
Médecins Sans Frontières warns that conflict and internal displacement continue to stymie Ebola response efforts. While current new cases are linked to known contact chains, areas of Ituri and North Kivu remain inaccessible to health workers.
DRC MoH Statistics/WHO AFRO Dashboard (as of January 17)
Total cases: 3,411
· Confirmed cases: 3,292
· Probable cases: 119
· Suspected cases: 516
· 267,456 (Merck Vaccine)
· 5.861 (Johnson & Johnson Vaccine)
In a new disease outbreak news report, the WHO said all 14 cases reported in the past week were registered contacts prior to symptom onset and had epidemiologic links to the transmission chain that originated from Aloya health area in Mabalako health zone. The WHO also said that in the past 3 weeks only 8% of confirmed fatalities (3 of 36) occurred in the community, outside of Ebola treatment centers. From these 3 community deaths, 15 additional cases occurred. Community deaths are known to add to disease spread. The WHO, however, highlighted some signs of progress. “It has been 20 months since the outbreak was first declared on 8 May 2018. The number of cases reported per week is lower than the period from March to September 2019,” the WHO said. “However, there are several health areas which are difficult to reach due to insecurity, including Mandima Health Zone, where there are rumours of several community deaths in Lwemba Health Area.”
In recent months, efforts to contain the outbreak were further hindered by the volatile security situation and an increase in violent attacks against medical facilities, personnel, and patients. In 2019, there were more than 300 attacks on Ebola health workers, resulting in six people killed and 70 wounded. At the end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020, an increase in military operations and a series of violent attacks by armed groups spurred protests in several towns in North Kivu province—the epicenter of the outbreak. Since November 20, daily demonstrations against the United Nations have become more violent: Dozens of people have died and approximately 250 people were violently attacked. Thousands of people have been displaced across North Kivu due to the recent deteriorating security situation.
Tweet by Helen Branswell – 1/17/20
There’s a mix of good & worrying news in @WHO’s weekly update. Some good news to start: All 14 of the cases recorded between Jan. 8-14 were known contacts of previous cases. That’s been rare in this outbreak. Good to know where the virus is spreading. But there are still parts of North Kivu & Ituri where the #Ebola response has limited or no access. And there are rumors of community deaths in 1 of them, Lwemba. The battle continues.