Congolese officials have confirmed the death of one of at least two new Ebola patients in South Kivu province.
The outbreak in Congo has killed more than 1,800 people but this is the first time in the year-long epidemic Ebola has spread to South Kivu. The new cases were reported Friday near the city of Bukavu in Congo’s Mwenga area, near the Rwanda border.
Treating Ebola has been a challenge for Congolese authorities because of ongoing civil strife.
In addition, many people do not believe Ebola is real. Instead of seeking medical care, they may chose to stay at home, which allows the virus to spread.
Anti-Ebola efforts have also faced adversity from residents suspicious of the extensive precautions taken by the health care workers to stop the spread of the highly contagious disease. Because Ebola virus can be transmitted through a victim’s bodily fluids after death, even burial of the victims requires stringent safety protocols.
The current outbreak is considered the worst since the two-year outbreak in West Africa that started in 2014 and killed more than 11,000 people.
Source: Voice of America