1. Situation update
Over the last three months, there has been a steady decrease in the incidence of confirmed Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) cases in Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). In the week of 11 to 17 November 2019, nine new confirmed EVD cases were reported from three health zones in two affected provinces, compared to 126 cases reported at the peak of the epidemic in the last week of April 2019. No cases were reported from both Mandima and Mambasa health zones. After over 30 days with no new cases, Oicha Health Zone reported a new confirmed community death with links to Kalunguta, Oicha and Mandima health zones. Following initial resistance from family members and the community, a multidisciplinary team has now commenced investigations around this case. So far, the source of exposure is yet to be identified. All other cases reported in Beni and Mabalako health zones in the past week have been linked to known chains of transmission.
Although the number of weekly reported cases is decreasing, it is expected that the outbreak response will encounter more complex circumstances as some transmission continues within rural and hard to reach communities. Multidisciplinary response teams are building on sustained progress by enhancing efforts to thoroughly engage with the community in order to investigate all new cases, to improve contact tracing and access to vaccination and consequently break the remaining transmission chains.
In the 21 days from 28 October to 17 November 2019, 12 health areas and five health zones have reported cases. During this period, a total of 31 confirmed cases were reported, with Mabalako (45%; n=14 cases), Beni (29%; n=9) and Mandima (19%; n=6) cases as the principal hot spots.
As of 17 November 2019, a total of 3296 EVD cases were reported, including 3178 confirmed and 118 probable cases, of which 2196 cases died (overall case fatality ratio 67%). Of the total confirmed and probable cases, 56% (1854) were female, 30% (996) were children aged less than 18 years, and 5% (162) were healthcare workers.