Congo's health ministry confirms 3 more cases of Ebola

Ebola virus

The death toll from an outbreak of a fresh strain of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo has risen to 34 even as officials say they will begin vaccinations this week to help prevent new infections.

The vaccination campaign will target healthcare providers, contacts of confirmed Ebola cases and their contacts, said Barthe Ndjoloko Tambwe, director of the Ebola response in Beni.

Using the remaining vaccine doses in the new outbreak is "common sense", a DRC Ministry of Public Health spokesperson tells ScienceInsider, because both scientific and ethical committees have already given the go ahead to continue to study the effectiveness of the vaccine. According to The Associated Press, Health Minister Oly Illunga Kalengatold the media that there are 16 confirmed cases of the haemorrhagic fever, 27 probable cases and 31 suspected ones.

The Ministry of Health has asked health workers to enhance their surveillance following a fresh Ebola outbreak in neigbouring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

World Health Organization said plans are being made for the field teams to be able to conduct immediate testing of suspected cases while samples are sent to Entebbe, central Uganda for confirmatory testing.

Manchester United 'offered Miralem Pjanic in Paul Pogba bid'
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Targeted vaccinations are expected to begin on Wednesday.

Health experts in the city closest to the new outbreak, Beni, have been setting up "cold chains" to keep the vaccines at the optimal temperature of minus 70 degrees Celsius, a challenge in a region with hot temperatures and unreliable power supplies. Trade activities between the countries result in frequent cross-border movement.

Local authorities announced on Tuesday that 14 bodies had been discovered in the town of Tubameme, about 40 km (25 miles) northeast of the epicenter of the outbreak in the town of Mangina. More than one million people are displaced there.

Dr Derek Gatherer, a virologist from Lancaster University, warned the outbreak earlier this summer was "reminiscent" of the 2014 Ebola pandemic.

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