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News > Democratic Republic of Congo

Congo: WHO Starts Ebola Vaccination as COVID-19 Spreads

  • Ebola vaccination in Mbandaka,Democratic Republic of Congo, June 5, 2020.

    Ebola vaccination in Mbandaka,Democratic Republic of Congo, June 5, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @OMSRDCONGO

Published 5 June 2020

The Kinshasa province is the pandemic's epicenter with over 3,300 COVID-19 cases.

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced the start of an Ebola vaccination campaign in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a country that is also exposed to the COVID-19 pandemic.


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"We are very concerned about this new outbreak in Mbandaka, where we have worked very closely with the government in 2018 to contain the last outbreak," WHO Regional Director for Africa Dr. Matshidiso Moeti tweeted.

WHO also affirmed to collaborate alongside Congolese doctors on the gene sequencing of the virus to compare it with North Kivu’s strain. 

According to Moeti, WHO sent supplies and response teams to Mbandaka, to support the government-led Ebola outbreak restraining strategy. She also stressed response’s urgency, due to the outbreak’s proximity to borderline territories and transport routes. 

DRC: A WHO logistics officer receives additional doses of the Ebola vaccine at Mbandaka airport. Vaccination started with people working on the front line in the epidemiological belt. These activities will continue later with their contacts.

The new Ebola outbreak in the northwestern region concurs with the COVID-19 pandemic. On June 1, Longondo reported four deceases due to Ebola in that region.

The northwestern region Friday registered its first COVID-19 case, summing up to another 10 virus affected regions. South Kivu, North Kivu, and Upper Katanga also reported more cases, although on a smaller scale.

Congo Central province reports 210 cases as the Kinshasa province is the country's epicenter with over 3,300 infections, as Health Ministry Eteni Longondo briefed.

As for Friday morning, RDC Health authorities reported 611 COVID-19 cases, 20 deaths, and 179 recoveries from the virus.

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