The World Health Organisation Tuesday said the outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is “a distinct and independent event”, with no relationship to the epidemic in West Africa.
Based on virus sequencing of samples from the Ebola outbreak in DRC, WHO’s collaborating laboratory in Gabon confirmed the virus is the Zaire strain. The indigenous strain lies in a lineage most closely related to the outbreak occurred in 1995 in the country, Xinhua quoted the WHO statement as saying.
“The virus in the Boende district is definitely not derived from the virus strain currently circulating in West Africa,” the WHO quoted the laboratory report as saying.
According to the UN heath agency, the outbreak is located in the remote Boende district in the north-western part of DRC, which marked the country’s seventh Ebola outbreak since 1976.
The UN body noted these findings are reassuring, as they exclude the possibility that the virus has spread from West to Central Africa.
DRC health minister announced Tuesday that the toll from Ebola outbreak in the country has increased from 13 to 31.
Seven of these deaths were among health care workers.
The DRC government has rapidly mounted a robust response by reactivating emergency committees at national, provincial, and local levels, setting up isolation centres, and providing community leaders with facts about the disease.