Democratic Republic of Congo: Ebola Virus Disease - External Situation Report 22
1. Situation update
The Ministry of Health (MoH), WHO and partners continue to respond to the Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, despite security challenges which have temporarily disrupted key response activities in some affected areas, notably Beni and Butembo. These response activities are progressively resuming. On 1 January 2019, six new confirmed cases were reported from Beni (2), Butembo (2) and Katwa (2). Only one case was a known contact; investigations are underway to establish the epidemiological links of the other cases.
During the reporting period (26 December 2018 - 1 January 2019), 23 newly confirmed cases were reported from Beni (4), Butembo (4), Kalunguta (2), Katwa (4), Komanda (2), Mabalako (1), and Oicha (6) health zones.
As of 1 January 2019, a total of 608 EVD cases, including 560 confirmed and 48 probable cases (Table 1), were reported from 16 health zones in the two neighbouring provinces of North Kivu and Ituri (Figure 1), of which 10 health zones reported at least one confirmed case in the last 21 days (12 December 2018 - 1 January 2019). Over this period, 103 confirmed cases were reported from 10 health zones, the majority of which were concentrated in major urban centres and towns in Beni (12), Butembo (13), Mabalako (13), Katwa (22), Komanda (21), and Oicha (10), which remain the main hotspots of this outbreak. As of 1 January 2019, no new cases were reported among healthcare workers, leaving the number of affected healthcare workers at 54, including 18 deaths.
Trends in case incidence (Figure 2) reflect the continuation of the outbreak across these geographically dispersed areas. The reported number of cases in epidemiological week 52 (24 - 30 December 2018) has decreased compared to that of week 51 (17 - 23 December 2018), with 19 new confirmed cases in week 52 compared to 35 new confirmed cases in week 51. However, active case finding, laboratory diagnosis, and data reporting were disrupted during week 52, which led to an under-reporting of cases, particularly in Beni and Butembo. During week 52, the number of reported deaths among confirmed cases was 11 of which seven (64%) were community deaths. Community deaths were reported in Beni (1), Butembo (1), Katwa (1), Komanda (1), Mabalako (1), and Oicha (2). As of 1 January 2018, a cumulative total of 368 deaths were reported, including 320 deaths among confirmed cases. The case fatality among confirmed cases is 57% (320/560).
The MoH, WHO and partners continue to monitor and investigate all alerts in affected areas, in other provinces in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and in neighbouring countries. Since the last report was published, alerts were investigated in several provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. To date, EVD has been ruled out in all alerts outside the above-mentioned outbreak affected areas.