Africa

Ebola Rears its Ugly Head in the DRC

A woman who was in contact with at least 70 people has died of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It could signal the start of the 12th outbreak of the virus in the country, three months after the health authorities in the country declared the last outbreak vanquished. The Health Ministry announced on Sunday that the wife of a farmer who had survived the disease died Feb. 3, three days after she first showed symptoms, at a hospital in Butembo, a city of 700,000 in North Kivu Province. A blood analysis on the woman performed in Butembo came back positive for the virus, the ministry said. The World Health Organization said in a statement that its epidemiologists were investigating, that more than 70 contacts of the victim had been identified and that disinfection was underway of the sites she was known to have visited. It was not immediately clear whether the victim’s infection was traceable to the Ebola outbreak that devastated North Kivu for nearly two years starting in August 2018. It killed more than 2,000 people.

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