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The Rwanda National Ebola Preparedness Exercise and Response Strategies

Nyamusore Jose1,*, Mazarati Jean Baptiste2, Ndimubanzi Patrick3, Kabeja Adeline1, Balisanga Helene1, Nizeyimana Felicien1, Ruyange Laurent1, Kapiteni Alexis1, Itanga Ines1, Ndagijimana Valens1, Gashegu Misbah1, Uwamahoro Sandrine1, Murekatete Celine1, Umutoni Angela1, Nsanzabaganwa Christian4, Hitimana Nadia5, Byiringiro Fidele4, Nsanzimana Sabin1, Mutesa Leon7, Gashumba Diane3

1Epidemic Surveillance and Response, Rwanda Biomedical Center, Kigali, Rwanda
2Biomedical Services, Rwanda Biomedical Center, Kigali, Rwanda
3Ministry of Health, Kigali, Rwanda
4Rwanda Military Hospital, Kigali, Rwanda
5Clinton Health Access Initiative, Kigali, Rwanda
6University Teaching Hospital of Kigali, Rwanda
7College of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Rwanda, Kigali, Rwanda



Since 2018 to date, regional and global health communities are being challenged by the Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) [1, 2].

After almost a year, since the current EVD outbreak started, there is no sign that can predict when this outbreak will be controlled. On 19 July 2019, WHO declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) with risk for regional spread including Rwanda [3].

To control any outbreak and specifically for EVD, the existence of health system strength is paramount. This is the foundation for enabling the surveillance and response strategies to reduce morbidity and mortality due to EVD. The inadequate health system jeopardizes the entire mechanism of response. This was demonstrated through the first-ever Ebola virus disease outbreak in the West African region from 2014 to 2016 where more than 11,000 lives were lost over 28,000 identified cases across Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Guinea. A reoccurring outbreak was also reported in the DRC in the years 2017 and 2018 [3,4].

Based on this experience and in consideration of the current DRC outbreak geographical proximity, Rwanda has increased control over cross border population movement. In addition, Rwanda has developed a preparedness strategy based on a scenario of cross-border importation.



Category: Outbreak report

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