Marburg Virus Disease outbreak in Equatorial Guinea ends

The outbreak of Marburg Virus Disease in Equatorial Guinea has ended today with no new cases reported over the past 42 days after the last patient was discharged from treatment.

The outbreak, which was declared on 13 February, was the first of its kind in Equatorial Guinea. A total of 17 laboratory-confirmed cases and 12 deaths were recorded. All the 23 probable cases reported died. Four patients recovered from the virus and have been enrolled in a survivors programme to receive psychosocial and other post-recovery support.

Five districts in four of Equatorial Guinea’s eight provinces were affected. Among the reported cases, many were closely linked either through social gatherings and networks, or geographically.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Africa, Matshidiso Moeti, “While outbreak-prone diseases continue to pose a major health threat in Africa, we can bank on the region’s growing expertise in health emergency response to act quickly and decisively to safeguard health and avert widespread loss of life.

“The hard work by Equatorial Guinea’s health workers and support by partner organizations has been crucial in ending this outbreak. WHO continues to work with countries to improve measures to detect and respond effectively to disease outbreaks,” Moeti said.

Although the outbreak has ended, WHO says it will continue to work with Equatorial Guinea to maintain measures such as surveillance and testing to enable prompt action should flare-ups of the virus occur, with the training provided during the outbreak helping to strengthen readiness capacity.

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