Confirmed Ebola cases in Congo spikes to 39

Last week, the Democratic Republic of the Congo declared a new Ebola virus disease outbreak, confirming two laboratory-tested cases. That number has now increased to 39, the World Health Organization reports.

Of the 39 reported Ebola cases, 19 deaths have occurred from April 4 through May 13. To date, 393 potential Ebola-carrying contacts have been identified and are being followed-up with.

The Congo's Ministry of Health is coordinating the emergency outbreak response, with support from WHO. WHO is deploying 50 public health experts to assist with response activities and has released $1 million from the contingency fund for emergencies. In addition, the United Nations granted $2 million and the Welcome Trust provided £2 million pounds ($2.71 million) for research needs.

Currently, WHO considers the public health risk of the outbreak to be high at the national level, moderate at the regional level and low at the international level.

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