This Weekly Bulletin focuses on selected acute public health emergencies occurring in the WHO African Region. The WHO Health Emergencies Programme is currently monitoring 76 events in the region. This week’s edition covers key new and ongoing events, including:
- Circulating vaccine-derived polio virus type 2 in Democratic Republic of the Congo
- Ebola virus disease in Democratic Republic of the Congo
- Hepatitis E in Namibia
- Humanitarian crisis in Burkina Faso.
For each of these events, a brief description, followed by public health measures implemented and an interpretation of the situation is provided.
A table is provided at the end of the bulletin with information on all new and ongoing public health events currently being monitored in the region, as well as recent events that have largely been controlled and thus closed.
Major issues and challenges include:
- Health authorities in Democratic Republic of the Congo reported two simultaneous events of genetically-distinct circulating vaccine-derived polio virus type 2 (cVDPV2) in Kasai and Sankuru provinces. In both events, two case-patients with acute flaccid paralysis were confirmed with geneticallylinked circulating vaccine derived poliovirus type 2. The two events become the fifth and sixth genetically-distinct cVDPV2 outbreaks in the country. While comprehensive responses are being undertaken, these events highlight the need to maintain high levels of routine polio vaccination coverage in all countries in the region to minimize the risk and consequences of any poliovirus circulation.
- The Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak in North Kivu and Ituri provinces, Democratic Republic of the Congo continues, with insecurity incidents reported in Beni this week targeting Ebola response personnel. The weekly incidence showed minimum reduction in the number of new confirmed EVD cases this week, as the transmission intensity keeps fluctuating. All efforts to step up and sustain ongoing response operations need to continue.