The health ministers of ten Central African countries have stepped up their cooperation in the fight against the Ebola epidemic, which, according to the authorities, has killed more than 2 170 people in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The Congolese Health Minister and his colleagues from the nine neighboring countries of the DRC discussed in Goma on Monday the possibility of “developing a framework for cross-border cooperation to respond to the Ebola epidemic”, the Ministry of Health said in a statement.
This mechanism aims to “ensure the timely exchange of critical information for a rapid response to control this epidemic” and “strengthen cross-border health surveillance”, he said.
A total of 2,171 people have died from Ebola in the DRC since the outbreak on 1 August 2018. This is the tenth outbreak of Ebola on Congolese soil since 1976. Following an assessment, on Friday the WHO maintained the current epidemic in the DRC as a global health emergency.
The meeting of Health Ministers, organized in collaboration with the WHO and the African Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC Africa), brought together the DRC, Angola, Burundi, the Central African Republic, the Republic of Congo, Rwanda, South Sudan, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania and Zambia.
Among the DRC’s neighbors, Uganda has recorded four cases of Ebola on its territory alone, although thousands of people cross the borders between the Democratic Republic of Congo and its nine neighbors every day.