Saturday, June 1, 2019

Be Kind

I too must remember this advice. Be kind.

Ebola continues to ravage the Democratic Republic of Congo. 

And the World Health Organization informed Thursday that children under five infected with Ebola are dying at a higher rate than other patients as their parents shun special treatment centres, where survival rates are markedly higher – and instead visit multiple healthcare facilities that are not as well-equipped to provide treatment or isolation. 

They made known that “all cases that may not be adequately isolated, including children under five-years of age, may pose a considerable transmission risk to healthcare workers, patients, and members of the community”.

A Congolese woman and her children who are suspected Ebola patients sit at the Ebola treatment centre in Butembo in the Democratic Republic of Congo, March 28, 2019. Image credit: Reuters/Baz Ratner 

Children under five are also less likely than older youth to be included on lists of possible contacts exposed to the disease, who require surveillance or vaccination, they added, calling for improved tracing and monitoring. 

Three out of four of the under-fives, or 77 percent, are succumbing to the disease, compared with 57 percent for older youngsters and 67 percent for all infected people, the UN body revealed in a new analysis of the epidemic – the world’s second worst on record. 

Under-fives account for 15 percent, or 300 of the 1,945 cases reported since the epidemic began last August, the WHO disclosed. In all, 1,302 people have died. 

Congo’s Ebola outbreak has inflicted an unusually heavy toll on children. More than a quarter of the confirmed and probable cases identified as of early April were children under 15, compared to 18 percent in the last major outbreak in West Africa in 2013-2016, according to figures compiled by the Geneva-based WHO. 

But fatality rates for both under and over 5s were in line with those observed in the West Africa outbreak, they said.

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