The second most serious ebola outbreak in history contributes to a larger city in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, while experts wonder whether supplies of experimental vaccine will be enough to provide demand for an epidemic that does not I see the end.
Butembo, which has more than one million inhabitants, reported on its first cases of fatal haemorrhagic fever. This complicates efforts to control the disease, which have already been reduced by attacks by rebels in other areas, which make it virtually impossible to detect the virus in some isolated villages.
"We are very concerned about the epidemiological situation in Butembo," said John Johnson, coordinator of the Doctors Without Borders project in the city. According to the NGO, new cases are rapidly increasing in the eastern suburbs and in peripheral and isolated districts.
The outbreak reported on August 1 is the second most devastating to the one that caused more than 11,300 deaths in West Africa a few years ago. Currently, there are 471 cases of Ebola, of which 423 confirmed, including 225 deaths, were reported from the Congolese Health Ministry on Thursday.
Without the work of groups that have so far carried out the vaccination of more than 41,000 people, the outbreak could cause more than 10,000 cases, the ministry added.
This is by far the biggest attempt of a promising but experimental Ebola vaccine owned by Merck Pharmaceutical. The company has 300,000 doses in stock and takes several months to develop the drug.
"We are very concerned about the size of vaccine stocks," said STO this week for STA urgent director of the World Health Organization. Peter Salama. 300,000 doses are not enough, as urban outbreaks are more frequent, he said.
Healthcare workers and people close to those who are infected with ebola receive a cure under the "circadian vaccination" scheme, but in some cases they were offered to all community members who are difficult to reach. A spokeswoman for the WHO said that vaccine shipments come almost every week to provide care.