Officials in the Congo reported on Tuesday that ain Goma of the city with more than 2 million inhabitants had been confirmed this month. Jean-Jacques Muyembe, a local Ebola coordinator, told reporters that there was no connection between the man's case and the previous case in Goma.
The patient arrived from a mining area in the northeastern Congolese province of Ituri on July 13 and showed symptoms on July 22. He is now isolated in an Ebola treatment center. According to health experts, Ebola symptoms can occur between two and 21 days after infection.
Goma is located on the busy Congo border with Rwanda and has an international airport. For months, health officials had feared that an Ebola case would be confirmed there. Days after the announcement of the first Goma case, the World Health Organization declared the Ebola outbreak a rare global emergency.
This is the second most deadly Ebola outbreak in history, killing more than 1,700 people, despite the widespread use of an experimental but effective Ebola vaccine. Stemming the outbreak is facing unprecedented challenges, including rebel group attacks and resistance from cautious residents in a Congolese region that has never experienced an outbreak of Ebola before. Officials on Tuesday tried to persuade both Goma and Goma residents Reassure neighboring countries that action is being taken to strengthen the surveillance of Ebola at border posts and elsewhere. The neighboring countries Rwanda, Uganda and South Sudan started vaccinating health workers weeks or months ago. The WHO says the risk of regional spread is still "very high".
The declaration of a Global Health Emergency – the fifth in history – brought new pledges from international donors worth millions to combat misunderstandings in the community. Far too many people die from this outbreak at home, they say.
There is no approved treatment for Ebola, and survival may depend on being treated as soon as possible. Yet many people in the region do not believe that Ebola is real, health experts said.
The first confirmed Ebola case in Goma was a 46-year-old preacher who managed to pass three health checks on the way from Butembo. The city is one of the communities most affected by the outbreak, second only to West Africa after the Ebola epidemic in 2014/16, which killed more than 11,300 people.