The 10th Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo continues unabated and has now reached the province of South Kivu.
Two cases were detected in the health zone of Mwenga, a rural and scarcely populated area southwest of Bukavu, the capital of the province of South Kivu. They travelled approximately 700 km from Beni to Mwenga having passed by Goma. The first case, a young woman, considered a high-risk contact and vaccinated in Beni, died on 14 August in Mwenga. Her son was confirmed positive on 15 August and is currently receiving treatment. More than 120 contacts have been identified and vaccination started on the 15 August.
UNICEF reports that 1,380 children have lost at least one parent since the beginning of the outbreak. Children under 18 are also being particularly hit by this outbreak, accounting for 28% of all cases.
Heavily affected by insecurity and recurrent displacement, South Kivu counts with 1.7 million people in need of humanitarian assistance, according to OCHA. Given the absolute lack of infrastructure and basic services, with several areas in IPC 3 and currently facing a measles outbreak, people in South Kivu struggle to have access to food, health care and clean water.
So far, 2,859 Ebola cases have been reported (2,765 confirmed and 94 probable cases), 1,902 persons have died and 847 have recovered. The outbreak is now affecting 28 health zones in three provinces of DRC.