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Ebola outbreak declared as Public Health Emergency of International Concern
The Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) was declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) on 17 July 2019.
Since being declared almost a year ago, the outbreak has been classified as a level 3 emergency – the most serious – by World Health Organization (WHO), triggering the highest level of mobilisation from WHO. The United Nations (UN) has also recognised the seriousness of the emergency by activating the Humanitarian System-wide Scale-Up to support the Ebola response.
This declaration followed a meeting of the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee for EVD in the DRC. The Committee cited recent developments in the outbreak in making its recommendation, including the first confirmed case in Goma, a city of almost two million people on the border with Rwanda, and the gateway to the rest of DRC and the world.
The Committee expressed disappointment about delays in funding which have constrained the response. They also reinforced the need to protect livelihoods of the people most affected by the outbreak by keeping transport routes and borders open. It is essential to avoid the punitive economic consequences of travel and trade restrictions on affected communities.
More information on the Ebola outbreak in DRC at WHO website: https://www.who.int/ebola/en/