Ebola outbreak in DRC to be re-assessed after encouraged progress

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The International Health Regulations Emergency Committee for Ebola virus disease will meet to assess whether the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) continues to constitute a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).

At a press briefing here on Tuesday, World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that regardless of the Emergency Committee's recommendation, the world needs to continue to fund the Ebola response.

"We are very encouraged by the current trend. There have only been 3 cases in the past week, and no cases in the past 3 days," the WHO chief told reporters.

But he stressed that "until we have no cases for 42 days, it's not over."

"As you know, any single case could re-ignite the epidemic, and the security situation in eastern DRC remains extremely fragile. So we take the progress on Ebola with caution, although it's a big success," he noted.

The WHO head said he will travel to Kinshasa for meetings with the president of DRC and other senior ministers to look beyond Ebola, and sketch out ways to strengthen DRC's health system.

Earlier on July 17 of 2019, WHO declared the Ebola virus disease outbreak in DRC a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.

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