GOMA – The United Nations Children’s Fund on Tuesday said children are particularly affected by the ongoing Ebola outbreak in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo as death toll from the deadly disease rises to 55 since this month began.
Authorities in DRC announced on Tuesday Ebola has so far claimed 55 lives including lives of two children.On Monday, the government of DRC announced free treatment against the disease for the next three months.
Ministry of health officials say the latest death figures come, following five new victims in Mabalako-Mangina, close to Beni, the epicentre of the outbreak in the North Kivu province.
The Mayor of Beni territory, Nyonyi Bwanakawa told this news website the government was doing everything to contain the situation and stop the disease from spreading.
“The other challenge we have is that some areas where the disease is identified is still affected by the presence of the militias which hampers quick delivery of medicine,” Bwanakawa said.
UNICEF says it has identified 53 orphaned children who have lost their parents to the deadly viral disease.
“The impact of the disease on children is not limited to those who have been infected or suspected. Many children are faced with the illness or death of their parents and loved ones, while some children have lost large parts of their families and become isolated. These children urgently need our support,” Gianfranco Rotigliano, the UNICEF representative in Congo, said in a statement.
UNICEF and its partners have trained 88 psychosocial workers to assist and comfort children in centres, and to support children discharged as free of Ebola, but may be at risk of stigmatization within the community.
The country has begun using the experimental mAb114 Ebola treatment which authorities have described as successful.
The DRC has experienced 10 Ebola outbreaks since the virus was discovered in 1976, altogether killing some 900 people.