A renewed Ebola outbreak has been declared in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) after confirmed cases were identified during the first weeks of February 2021. Vaccination efforts in the DRC are underway.
The epicenter of the previous Ebola outbreak (2018-2020) is again a flashpoint, with the northeastern region of the DRC recording at least eleven cases (as of day 20) and four deaths already linked to Ebola. North Kivu provincial health authorities in eastern DRC are leading the response with support from the Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization. Many health zones throughout eastern DRC are better prepared for responding, monitoring and containing Ebola due to recent experience. Nevertheless, only a few NGOs are mobilized to address the current outbreak, and funding is limited.
The Ministry of Health issued an urgent call for assistance to:
Procure personal protection equipment for health care workers.
Implement infection and prevention control in more than 300 at-risk facilities.
Train and mobilize community health care workers to conduct house-to-house surveillance to identify cases and curtail further spread of Ebola.
IMA WORLD HEALTH – ACTIONS TAKEN AND NEXT STEPS
IMA World Health, through MOMENTUM Integrated Health Resilience (MIHR), has proposed targeting 15 health facilities (and up to 25 counties) for surveillance with support from USAID, as well as outreach and community awareness. Additionally, the Ministry of Health assigned IMA as co-lead for the field coordination unit in Butembo.
IMA World Health is currently implementing integrated health services programming in two of the four health zones currently affected: Katwa and Butembo. From 2018 to 2020, IMA led an Ebola response in the areas.