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In addition, he said that the surrounding nine countries had been put on "high alert".

"Our country is facing another epidemic of the Ebola virus, which constitutes an global public health emergency", the Democratic Republic of the Congo's health ministry said in a statement.

The centre also helped contingents from Nigeria deal with the outbreak in the three most affected countries-Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.

At least 18 people have died of suspected haemorrhagic fever in an outbreak that was first confirmed on 8 May in Bikoro health zone, a remote part of the country.

The cases include three healthcare workers, including one who has died, Salama said.

Given the significant number of suspected probable and confirmed cases, "we are planning for all scenarios, including the worst-case scenario", he added.

The initial focus will be on surveillance and understanding the extent of the outbreak; safe burials; case by case management; and preparing for any public health measures deemed necessary in terms of vaccination. "We know from previous outbreaks that the DRC are ready to act, but they need global support to ensure this outbreak is contained effectively", said Jeremy Farrar, Wellcome's director and a specialists in infectious diseases.

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The Kenyan government has come out to speak following Ebola outbreak in DRC.

"It is important to remember that there are several types of hemorrhagic fever apart from the Ebola virus" in Congo, Health Minister Oly Ilunga told reporters on Thursday. This is the fourth time that an Ebola outbreak has been reported in the former province of Equateur, following those of 1976, 1977 and 2014.

Reports say World Health Organization is moving quickly, having been criticised for bungling its response to a 2014-2016 outbreak that killed more than 11,300 people in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia.

Based on lessons learned in past outbreaks, the World Health Organization has already produced some technical materials in the local language and sent them to the area, Salama said. The infection is transmitted by direct contact with the blood, body fluids, and tissues of infected animals or people.

"Public health emergency of worldwide concern" means an extraordinary event which is determined, as provided in these Regulations: "(i) to constitute a public health risk to other States through the global spread of disease and (ii) to potentially require a coordinated worldwide response".

Although the DRC is resource poor, along with the WHO, MSF and Africa CDC, they are experience rich.


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