Health officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo say over 200 people have now died from the latest outbreak of Ebola.
Officials also say the current Ebola outbreak is the worst to hit the country as they battle to end the spread. The current outbreak also ranks as third worst in the history of Africa.
Jessica Ilunga, a spokeswoman for the ministry is quoted by Reuters as saying that “The current epidemic is the worst in the history of DRC.”
Most of the deaths according to officials occurred in North Kivu and Ituri provinces. The activities of armed groups in those areas have also compounded the crisis.
Director-General of the World Health Organization Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus last week said “When there is an attack, the operation actually freezes.
So we hold the operation. And when the operation stops, the virus gets advantage and it affects us in two ways.”
Tedros also added that “there is always a backload of vaccinations, or contact tracing” due to violence in some areas.
“And the other, the second problem, is that more cases are generated because we can’t vaccinate” people, according to Tedros.
The Ebola virus which is transmitted by bats after detection in DRC was named after the Ebola river. Ebola leads to internal and external bleeding which can cause damage done to blood vessels.
DR Congo’s neigbours are also on alert to prevent a spread into their territories. Uganda is rolling out a mass vaccination exercise for its citizens.
South Sudan is also putting in place measures to prevent a spread as refugees from DR Congo cross over.