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WHO AFRO Outbreaks and Other Emergencies, Week 21: 19 - 25 May 2018 (Data as reported by 17:00; 25 May 2018)


5 New events

59 Ongoing events

54 Outbreaks

10 Humanitarian crises

This Weekly Bulletin focuses on selected acute public health emergencies occurring in the WHO African Region. The WHO Health Emergencies Programme is currently monitoring 64 events in the region. This week’s edition covers key ongoing events, including:

  • Ebola virus disease in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Anthrax in Uganda
  • Cholera in Tanzania
  • Cholera in north-east Nigeria
  • Humanitarian crisis in South Sudan.

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 events that have recently been closed.

Major issues and challenges include:

As the Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak continues in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, great progress has been made to scale up response operations by all key stakeholders. The spread of the disease to Mbandaka City (a regional hub with major transport links) has changed the dynamics of the outbreak as well as the community resistance observed during the week. The objective of the response remains rapid containment of EVD in localized areas. The priority is to continue scaling up implementation of effective outbreak control interventions in terms of coverage, scale and speed. Immediate funding is required by all the response stakeholders in order to maintain the current momentum.

Uganda has been experiencing recurrent outbreaks of anthrax since February 2018, with four districts from different parts of the country being affected. Several livestock have died of the disease. In the latest event, up to 16 farms have been affected in one district, indicating a much larger public health problem. The ongoing anthrax outbreak in Uganda needs to be addressed comprehensively by both public and animal health sectors.