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WHO AFRO Outbreaks and Other Emergencies, Week 7: 10 - 16 February 2018 (Data as reported by 17:00; 16 February 2018)

Situation Report
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This Weekly Bulletin focuses on selected acute public health emergencies occurring in the WHO African Region. The WHO Health Emergencies Programme is currently monitoring 51 events in the region. This week’s edition covers key ongoing events, including:

  • Circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Lassa fever in Nigeria
  • Cholera in Tanzania
  • Cholera in Malawi
  • Cholera in Zambia
  • Humanitarian crisis in 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 challenges include:

  • The circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is concerning and it is indicative of low population immunity against poliovirus. Potentially, the magnitude is much larger and more cases could be reported. This event calls for concerted efforts by the national authorities and global partners to halt and avert potential spread of the virus within the country and to neighbouring countries.

  • The current flare-up of the Lassa fever outbreak in Nigeria has been unprecedented. Seventeen states have been affected, including those that were traditionally non-endemic. Effective response to this outbreak requires large-scale operations.