Ebola death toll in DR Congo rises to 118

Health workers burn medical waste generated during care of Ebola patients near the eastern city of Beni some three weeks into the latest outbreak. Since then the death toll has almost doubled to 118

Officials in the Democratic Congo of the Republic (DRC) confirmed seven more Ebola cases late yesterday and announced new measures to curb the spread of the deadly disease.

The government said this due to several attacks on health workers during the latest Ebola outbreak in the country's troubled east. Twenty cases remain under investigation.

Emergency Response Chief, Peter Salama noted Beni in Congo's North Kivu province as the most concerning area in the city where dozens of people who may have been exposed to the disease are hiding from health workers.

By this point in the response to an Ebola outbreak, health officials are claiming there should be no new cases. As of Oct 7, the World Health Organization said the current outbreak's case-fatality rate is 63.5%, and 55% of cases involve female patients."The EVD outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo remains at a critical juncture due to the prevailing security threats, community reluctance and increased geographical spread".

Ebola has claimed 118 lives since the outbreak started nearly two months ago in a region where numerous militia groups operate, most fighting over the central African country's rich natural resources.

The disease is believed to have infected 194 people and killed 122 since the outbreak started in eastern Congo in July, according to the health ministry. Uganda has said it is preparing to begin vaccinations as needed.

Red Cross volunteers were injured during the burial of a suspected Ebola victim last week.

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