The Democratic Republic of Congo officials have confirmed a second case of the deadly Ebola virus in the eastern Congolese city of Goma. Goma, which lies directly on Congo’s border with Rwanda, is home to more than a million people and tens of thousands cross on foot daily. It is feared that this could spread the illness into Rwanda as the area is quite densely populated.
On Tuesday, Dr. Aruna Abedi, coordinator of the Ebola response in North Kivu province, told AFP news agency she had been informed of a second case.
Goma’s second Ebola patient is a man who traveled to Goma from a northeastern rural community in Ituri province. He was diagnosed a few days after arrival and is being treated at the Goma Ebola Treatment Center.
“All measures have been put in place so that the case is taken care of in Goma,” an official statement said, reported VOA News.
The first Ebola case in Goma was detected in mid-July when a pastor tested positive and later died, sparking fears the disease could spread quickly through the densely populated city. More than 2,500 cases of Ebola have been reported till now out of over 1,600 people have died of Ebola in DR Congo since the outbreak began in August 2018. About 12 new cases of Ebola are coming up every day.
The health officials believe the second patient is not connected to the first Ebola case detected in Goma.
“The response teams continue to work to decontaminate the home of the case and the high-risk contacts of the case have been identified and will be vaccinated from tomorrow,” said Jean-Jacques Muyembe, the head of Congo’s Ebola response team.
Last week, the World Health Organization declared the Ebola crisis a global health emergency.