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The Ebola outbreak defeated in DRC

Kinshasa/Dakar, July 1st, 2017. The Ministry of Health has declared the end of the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) after 42 days without any newly reported cases. ALIMA (The Alliance for International Medical Action) medical teams since left the Muma health area in Likati district, which was affected by the epidemic.

“We are pleased to see that no [new] cases of Ebola have been reported in the DRC for the past 42 days,
and we congratulate the Congolese authorities and their partners for having contained the outbreak so rapidly,” said Moumouni Kinda, program manager for ALIMA. 

During the intervention, the humanitarian medical organization trained 20 local health staff on the management of
patients suspected of having Ebola. In Muma, ALIMA teams also rehabilitated three health centers and set up two isolation units in the village. They donated nearly 2 tons of medication and medical equipment – including protective kits – to health authorities. 

The Ebola outbreak that began on May 12th in DRC’s Bas-Uélé province affected 5 people, 4 of whom died, according to the Ministry of Health. In addition, 105 suspected cases, for which laboratory tests were negative, were recorded. 

This is the eighth outbreak of Ebola in DRC since 1976, and all of them have been contained. These
outbreaks are generally small-scale outbreaks, which occur in hard-to-reach forested areas. 

In DRC, ALIMA teams adopted a response strategy different from those practiced in West Africa in 2014.
“We preferred to set up small units for the isolation of suspected cases,” Moumouni Kinda said. “Patients were mainly isolated in small emergency units, or occasionally in their homes, to avoid contamination of care teams in charge of transportation. We have made every effort to rapidly deploy secure medical care.”  

Support from the Start Fund made it possible for ALIMA to rapidly deploy emergency medical
assistance in this particularly difficult-to-access zone. 

The Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA) is a medical humanitarian organization that
works hand in hand with a network of local medical organizations to provide quality medical care to the most vulnerable individuals in emergency situations and recurrent crises. ALIMA and its partners are conducting leading-edge research to improve medical humanitarian response. 

Photo : Caroline Thirion / ALIMA

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