15 May 2018 RPS Partnership
DRC Ebola Outbreak
The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed it is going ahead with an experimental Ebola vaccine to contain the most recent Ebola outbreak in the town of Bikoro, near Mbandaka, Equateur province, which has so far killed 19 people. A further 39 suspected, cases have also been recorded by the WHO, 3 of these cases are health workers. The vaccine has been proven safe and effective in human trials but does not yet have a licence.
Ebola is one of the world's most notorious diseases, being both highly infectious and extremely lethal. It is caused by a virus that occurs naturally in the bat, which does not itself fall ill, but can pass the microbe on to humans who hunt it for "bushmeat". The virus is passed on through contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person. After an incubation period of between two and 21 days, Ebola develops into a high fever, weakness, intense muscle and joint pain, headaches and a sore throat. That is often followed by vomiting and diarrhoea, skin eruptions, kidney and liver failure, and internal and external bleeding.
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Photo: RPS Partnerhip - North Kivu