The World Health Organization says Ebola has spiked in Congo in recent days because of “increased security challenges,” a week after its director-general predicted the outbreak might be contained within six months.
The U.N. health agency said in an update late Thursday the recent attacks on Ebola clinics slowed response efforts for days. Congolese officials reported dozens of new suspected and confirmed cases recently. Last week, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus declared the outbreak was “contracting” and praised the efforts to avert a larger crisis.
Tariq Riebl of the International Rescue Committee, who is currently working in Congo, had a starkly different perspective.
“I think all of us in the field are aware that we’re very far from being near the end of this outbreak,” he said. Riebl said the recent jump in cases also points to ongoing surveillance failures.