The Democratic Republic of Congo on Wednesday declared the end of its latest Ebola epidemic, the most recent outbreak in the northwestern province of Equateur had claimed the lives of 55 people over the past five months. “I am happy to solemnly declare the end of the 11th epidemic of the Ebola virus in Equateur province” in the vast country’s northwest, Health Minister Eteni Longondo told journalists.
“The latest outbreak in the north-western province of Equateur claimed 55 people among 119 confirmed and 11 probable cases since it broke out in June”, the World Health Organisation(WHO) confirmed. Wednesday’s announcement came after the country successfully crossed a period of 42 days without a single reported case in the north-western province of Equateur– double the period that the deadly hemorrhage virus takes to incubate.
The latest epidemic of hemorrhagic fever erupted while the frontline health workers in the country indulged in battling the COVID-19 pandemic. The Health Minister urged the people to practice proper hygiene and to remain cautious not only to prevent the resurfacing of Ebola but also to avoid the spread of the COVID-19 which has marked an upsurge of cases in the country.
The International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies released a statement saying that the country still faced “significant humanitarian challenges”. An Ebola outbreak had previously ravaged Equateur between May and July 2018, a period between which 35 people had succumbed to the deadly epidemic.