pcloudy.png
Friday August 14th, 2020 7:42PM

Attacks could reverse gains in Congo's Ebola fight, WHO says

By The Associated Press

GENEVA (AP) — Attacks on Ebola treatment centers in eastern Congo threaten to reverse the gains being made against the current outbreak of the deadly virus, the World Health Organization's director-general said Thursday as a fourth attack on a health center was reported.

Nearly 600 people have died from Ebola in the volatile region, making it the second most deadly in history.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who has just returned from a visit to the affected areas in Congo, insisted that efforts to contain Ebola are succeeding. He said the WHO hopes the outbreak will be ended in the next six months.

His optimistic assessment starkly contrasted to one offered last week by the head of Doctors Without Borders, which pulled out of two Ebola centers following attacks. Eastern Congo is home to a myriad of armed groups, and the epidemic has deepened the political and economic grievances of many in the area.

Doctors Without Borders said over the last several weeks some 43 percent of new cases in the epicenter towns of Katwa and Butembo had no known links to other cases. That means the vigorous efforts to track the contacts of the sick are not entirely successful.

And more than 40 percent of the deaths are still taking place in communities rather than at Ebola treatment centers. The bodies of victims are highly contagious, and the aid group said that figure shows community mistrust is still widespread.

Tedros told journalists in Geneva that a much larger crisis has been averted: Ebola has been contained to eastern Congo without spreading across the massive Central African nation or crossing borders into neighboring countries.

"Despite the incredibly difficult situation the outbreak has been contained in 11 out of the 20 communities that have had cases," Tedros said.

"You cannot say it's failing when the outbreak is contracting," he added.

Doctors Without Borders described conditions at the epicenter in Congo as "toxic," saying that government security forces were complicating the effort by trying to force people into treatment centers.

Amid the backlash against the Ebola response, four health centers have been attacked.

One person was killed and another wounded on Thursday in an attack on an Ebola health center, according to Richard Nyembo, a local administrator for Lubero province. The violence erupted in Mamboa, about 30 miles (50 kilometers) from Butembo. The attackers targeted an Ebola transit center, where suspected cases are evaluated and then referred to treatment centers.

Congo has seen periodic outbreaks of the Ebola virus since it was first identified in 1976.

At least 584 people have died among the 927 confirmed and probable cases in this outbreak.

___

This version corrects to say 20 communities, not 28, per WHO update.

___

Larson reported from Dakar, Senegal. Associated Press writer Saleh Mwanamilongo in Kinshasa, Congo contributed.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Health, AP World News
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
The Latest: 'Empire' actor Jussie Smollett pleads not guilty
"Empire" actor Jussie Smollett has arrived at a Chicago courthouse where he's expected to plead not guilty to charges accusing him of lying to the police about being the victim of a racist and homophobic attack
11:15AM ( 15 minutes ago )
The Latest: 7 GOP senators now against Trump border order
Republican Sens. Mitt Romney and Sen. Lamar Alexander have endorsed a resolution passed by the Democratic-controlled House to block President Donald Trump from using emergency powers to fund his long-promised U.S.-Mexico border wall
11:14AM ( 16 minutes ago )
Why college students take on loans they can't repay
Three reasons why college students end up with debt they can't repay
11:03AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Kansas conservatives vote to condemn New York's abortion law
Kansas lawmakers have condemned New York's new law protecting abortion rights in a statement that will be sent to every New York legislator and its governor
7:01PM ( 16 hours ago )
Gluten, lactose in drugs? Study raises questions about risk
Report says pills can have ingredients like gluten, lactose or dyes that may cause problems for some patients
3:45PM ( 19 hours ago )
US health officials move to tighten sales of e-cigarettes
U.S. health regulators are moving ahead with a plan to keep e-cigarettes out of the hands of teenagers by restricting sales of most flavored products in convenience stores and online
2:15PM ( 21 hours ago )
AP Health
French leader, others urge speed in climate change fight
French leader, others urge speed in climate change fight as global youth's impatience grows
10:12AM ( 1 hour ago )
Acting Pentagon chief says IS territory nearly cleared
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan says the United States and its partners in Syria have liberated virtually all the territory the Islamic State group once held
9:58AM ( 1 hour ago )
UN says Syria donors on track to raise over $6.5 billion
International donors are on track to pledge more than $6.5 billion in aid for Syria and refugees who fled the conflict-ravaged country
9:53AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP World News
The Latest: 'Empire' actor Jussie Smollett pleads not guilty
"Empire" actor Jussie Smollett has arrived at a Chicago courthouse where he's expected to plead not guilty to charges accusing him of lying to the police about being the victim of a racist and homophobic attack
11:15AM ( 15 minutes ago )
The Latest: 7 GOP senators now against Trump border order
Republican Sens. Mitt Romney and Sen. Lamar Alexander have endorsed a resolution passed by the Democratic-controlled House to block President Donald Trump from using emergency powers to fund his long-promised U.S.-Mexico border wall
11:14AM ( 16 minutes ago )
Why college students take on loans they can't repay
Three reasons why college students end up with debt they can't repay
11:03AM ( 27 minutes ago )
Acting Pentagon chief: No steep basing cost hike for allies
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said the Pentagon has no plans to force allies to pay dramatically higher costs for hosting American forces in their countries, saying reports of a steep increase are wrong
11:01AM ( 28 minutes ago )
Brazil begins saying goodbye to victims of mass shooting
A large wake is being held for some of the victims of a mass shooting at a school in southern Brazil
10:55AM ( 34 minutes ago )