South Sudan is to step up its ebola preparedness activities amid concern over the potential spread of the current outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
In its latest ebola virus disease (EVD) situation report, the World Health Organization (WHO) said South Sudan was set to join Uganda in vaccinating most at-risk health care and frontline workers against ebola.
It comes as authorities continue to investigate ebola alerts outside of the DRC. Since the beginning of the year, alerts have been investigated in South Sudan, Uganda and in a traveller returning from Burundi to Sweden; however, EVD has been ruled out in all of these cases. The WHO said a doctor who returned to the United States of America after providing medical assistance in the DRC was among a number of international travellers who may have come in contact with the virus and were being followed closely. “All remain asymptomatic to date,” it said.
As of 6 January 2019, a total of 625 EVD cases have been reported in the DRC with 377 deaths reported. Fifty-five healthcare workers have been infected, with 18 deaths. The case fatality ratio among all confirmed cases is 57 per cent.