Review of past and present outbreaks in the Democratic Republic of Congo 1976-2014

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Community education campaigns designed to raise awareness on the viral nature of the Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever (EHF), (in particular hygiene measures, cooking of bush meat, and avoiding coming into contact with the biological fluids of people suspected or diagnosed with EHF) should be scaled up. National agencies and institutions specialized in controlling hunting (to avoid the consumption of infected animals) in the Equatorial region should be established, as well as structures for early detection and better prevention, since there is not yet a specific drug or vaccine to the Ebola Virus.

Ebola has become well known all over the world, especially following the West African outbreak in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia (December 2013). The Ebola virus was first discovered in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), an African country that has continued to register Ebola outbreaks. This review summarized both old and new experiences of Ebola in the DRC (from 1976 – 2014), according to statistics and geographic province, to propose strategies for better prevention of future outbreaks. The risks to healthcare workers and the rumours about causation are challenges for care, since hospitals may be seen as sources of the infection. Eleven full text articles and three abstracts were included in data abstraction, covering seven Ebola outbreaks, accounting for 1032 cases and 795 deaths.

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