The World Health Organization (WHO) has 4,000 doses of vaccines to combat the new outbreak of Ebola declared in the Democratic Republic of the World Health Organization Congo (DRC), according to its regional director for Africa, Matshidiso World Health Organization R. Moeti.
Moeti has stated, in statements published by the Congolese news website Actualite, that WHO is currently “working on this”. “We have obtained 4,000 doses, we are working on the deployment of equipment, including the cold chain, which can be deployed from here to tomorrow,” the regional director told the website on Sunday.
” The beginning of the vaccination will depend on the deployment of the team, we are working on it, it is within our priorities,” said Moeti.
Last week, the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo approved the sending of an experimental vaccine against Ebola to try to cope with the outbreak of the disease declared in Bikoro (northwest), where, according to the WHO, two confirmed cases have been detected, 20 probable and 17 suspects until this Sunday.
The vaccine is still in its experimental phase without a license and the risk of side effects is high, which is why it needs authorization from governments to be used.
Vaccine Vsv EBOV
This is the VSV EBOV vaccine, which has been validated by the Congolese government since 2017, and which was tested in West Africa in the 2014 outbreak that caused 11,300 deaths and more than 28,000 cases.
The World Health Organization said last week that it is preparing for the “worst possible scenario” in the African country.
The Director-General of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, visited the DRC this weekend and traveled to Bikoro to supervise the situation. “We are working with our partners 24 hours a day, seven days a week to stop this outbreak,” the CEO said on his Twitter account late on Sunday.
It is, according to the WHO, the ninth outbreak of Ebola that hits the Democratic Republic of the Congo since the virus was discovered in 1976 in this country when it was then called Zaire.
How is Ebola transmitted
The disease – which is transmitted by direct contact with the blood and body fluids of infected people or animals – causes severe bleeding and can have a 90% mortality rate.
The first symptoms are sudden and high fever, intense weakness and muscle, head and throat pain, as well as vomiting.
The worst Ebola epidemic known to date was declared in March 2014, with the first cases going back to December 2013 in Guinea Conakry, from where it expanded to Sierra Leone and Liberia.