WHO calls for sustained political commitment to end Ebola
The World Health Organisation Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called for sustained political commitment to improve the response to the current Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Ghebreyesus' statement comes in the wake of the DR Congo's Ministry of Health confirming that the number of Ebola cases reported has exceeded more than 2,000.
As of Tuesday, the ministry also said there were 12 new confirmed cases of and eight confirmed deaths from Ebola.
Ghebreyesus blamed insecurity in the region for hampering the response efforts.
“Without access to communities, we can't vaccinate those at risk, treat those infected or trace contacts,” Ghebreyesus said.
The Ebola outbreak is the 10th in the Democratic Republic of Congo since the disease was identified in 1976.
It is the worst on record after an epidemic that struck three African countries between 2014-2016, leaving more than 11,300 people dead.
A lack of trust in the government has frustrated efforts to contain Ebola since the outbreak began late last summer. Some residents falsely accuse foreigners of bringing Ebola to the area.
Efforts to tackle the crisis have also been hampered by militia attacks on treatment centres, in which some staff have been killed.
Following a series of attacks on treatment centres by unidentified assailants in February and March, the current outbreak was recorded to be spreading at its fastest rate yet.
Despite the challenges, Ghebreyesus insists the WHO is committed to end the current outbreak which has killed more than 1,300 people.
“We have the people, the tools, the knowledge and the determination to end Ebola in DRC. What we need is the sustained commitment of all parties so we can safely access and work with communities to beat the virus and end the suffering and loss of life,” Ghebreyesus said.