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MSF Ebola Treatment Center In DRC’s Katwa Attacked, Caretaker Killed

Associated Press: Ebola treatment center attacked in Congo’s east
“Assailants attacked an Ebola treatment center in Congo’s eastern town of Katwa on Sunday night, killing one caretaker and injuring another as the country grapples to control the second largest outbreak in recorded history, Congo’s health ministry said Tuesday. Doctors Without Borders confirmed the attack on its facility in Katwa, saying that the patients, four confirmed with Ebola and six suspected cases, have been transferred to other centers for continued treatment…” (Petesch/Mwanamilongo, 2/26).

CIDRAP News: New cases, torched center spotlight Katwa as Ebola hot zone
“…The attack — coupled with new cases recorded in the city this weekend — have made Katwa the epicenter of the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s (DRC’s) Ebola outbreak. ‘Attacks like this could undo the progress we have made. Despite this setback, we will keep working with the government, partners & communities to end this outbreak,’ said World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, PhD, on Twitter earlier [on Monday]…” (Soucheray, 2/25).

NPR: Why Does Ebola Keep Spreading In Congo? Here’s A Major Clue
“…[S]ome weeks ago, as cases started erupting around two towns, Katwa and Butembo, the investigators found that patient after patient had something else in common: They had all recently visited a health clinic for treatment for some other disease such as a respiratory infection or malaria. … The surge of confirmed cases in Katwa and Butembo — 307 and rising — is now the largest flare-up during the course of this outbreak, which has infected nearly 900 people since August. And WHO officials estimate that in about one-fifth of these recent cases, the person contracted Ebola at health care facilities…” (Aizenman, 2/25).

Reuters: Attackers torch Ebola treatment center in Congo, patients evacuated
“…There were no immediate details on the identity or motive of the people who torched the center in the district of Katwa, at the heart of the country’s worst outbreak of the deadly disease. … Most of the cases since the start of the year have been in Katwa, which is close to the border with Uganda…” (Mahamba/Paravicini, 2/25).

Vice Video: Why the latest Ebola outbreak in DRC is more worrisome than the first
“… ‘Clearly, we can’t become complacent,’ Matshidiso Moeti, WHO’s regional director for Africa, said earlier this month. ‘The greatest risk, which is related to insecurity, continues to be a factor’…” (2/25).