Health Officials Declare New Ebola Outbreak In Central Africa

Shock Ebola outbreak in Congo - 10 new cases suspected and two confirmed

Ebola strikes again in DRC

The Democratic Republic of Congo is on alert after at least 17 people died in the northwestern region over Ebola.

The samples were gathered after the Equateur Province Health Ministry notified Kinshasa on May 3 of some 21 cases of a hemorrhagic fever in the Ikoko Impenge area, including 17 deaths, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Congo's government.

The health ministry has confirmed the deaths in a statement: "Our country is facing another epidemic of the Ebolavirus, which constitutes an global public health emergency. Working with partners and responding early and in a coordinated way will be vital to containing this deadly disease", the WHO's Peter Salama said in a statement.

She urged the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious cases to health workers for immediate attention.

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The Federal Ministry of Health has stepped up surveillance at all entry points into Nigeria to prevent the spread of Ebola disease into the country, the Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole, has said. In fact, authorities in the Congo approved the use of the new vaccine but apparently did not inoculate the citizens there because of geographical challenges within the country combined with the fact that recent outbreaks have been relatively minor.

So far, 17 people have died in northwest DRC from Ebola, the Health Ministry there said on Tuesday, describing the fresh outbreak as a public health emergency with worldwide impact.

Tthe deadly Ebola virus made a comeback to the continent after the Democratic Republic of Congo declared its presence on Tuesday.

The virus is passed through direct human contact and originates in infected animals.

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Ebola is one of the world's most notorious diseases, being both highly infectious and extremely lethal. In this "new normal", Pace said the world health community must immediately dispatch resources and enlist global actors to fight outbreaks. The spread of the disease is worsened by mistrust of western medicine in some African communities.

It is spread through close contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person, including blood, vomit and diarrhea.

In West Africa, an Ebola outbreak that ended two years ago killed more than 11,300 people and infected some 28,600 as it rolled through Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia before finally being contained. Some of the first symptoms include fever fatigue, muscle pain, headache and sore throat.

In 2014, Merck partnered with NewLink Genetics Corporation in an exclusive worldwide license agreement to research, develop, manufacture, and distribute NewLink's investigational rVSV-EBOV (Ebola) vaccine candidate.

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