The Ebola virus outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo is officially over, reports the World Health Organization (WHO). A first case was reported in the northwestern province of Equateur in April.
A total of four cases have been confirmed and one person was suspected of being infected. All patients died, the WHO said.
A previous Ebola outbreak in the province from June to November 2020 led to 130 confirmed cases and 55 deaths. It was the fourteenth recorded Ebola outbreak in the Central African country of 90 million inhabitants.
“Thanks to the strong response from the national authorities, this outbreak has been brought to a rapid end with the limited transmission of the virus,” said Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. He said “crucial lessons” have been learned from past outbreaks.
The disease has appeared occasionally in Africa since its discovery in 1976. Between 2014 and 2016, the largest outbreak in West Africa killed more than 11,000. Ebola is transmitted through direct physical contact and often causes a high fever and internal bleeding.
“Africa is seeing an increase in Ebola and other infectious diseases that are spreading from animals to humans and affecting large urban areas,” Moeti said. “We need to be more and more vigilant to make sure we trace infections quickly.”