WHO / TEDROS DRC EBOLA

15-Jul-2019 00:03:22
Almost a year after the outbreak of Ebola was declared in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and with the number of new cases at worrying levels, the United Nations hosted a high-level meeting today in Geneva to take stock of the coordinated response and galvanize further support for the government-led effort to defeat the deadly disease. WHO
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STORY: WHO / TEDROS DRC EBOLA
TRT: 3:22
SOURCE: WHO
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 15 JULY 2019, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND / JUNE 2019, NORTH KIVU, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO
SHOTLIST
15 JULY 2019, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

1. Wide shot, Palais des Nations
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
Yesterday, WHO was notified of two very sad developments in the Ebola outbreak in DRC. The first was a case of Ebola in the city of Goma, in a pastor who had traveled from Butembo. Although this is a very concerning development, it's one that we and the government have expected and prepared for. Around 3000 people have been vaccinated and the pastor is receiving care at an Ebola treatment centre run by the Ministry of Health and Médecins sans Frontières. The second was that two Ebola responders were murdered in their home in Beni.”
3. Various shots, conference room
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“Just when we start to get control of the virus in one area, it appears in another. And violence and insecurity continue to undermine the response. We are dealing with one of the world's most dangerous viruses in one of the world's most dangerous areas.”
5. Various shots, conference room
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“Every attack makes it more difficult to trace contacts, vaccinate and perform safe burials. Every attack gives Ebola an opportunity to spread. Ebola gets a free ride in each and every attack. On top of that, community mistrust, political instability and the spread of myths and misinformation have been significant barriers.”
7. Various shots, conference room
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“Together, we will end this outbreak. But unless we address its root causes - the weak health system, the insecurity and the political instability - there will be another outbreak. We often talk about the need to bridge the humanitarian-development nexus. This is the moment to practice what we preach.”

JUNE 2019, NORTH KIVU, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO

9. Various shots, Ebola Response activities
STORYLINE
Almost a year after the outbreak of Ebola was declared in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and with the number of new cases at worrying levels, the United Nations hosted a high-level meeting today (15 Jul) in Geneva to take stock of the coordinated response and galvanize further support for the government-led effort to defeat the deadly disease.

On Sunday (14 Jul), the first case of Ebola was confirmed in Goma, a city of about one million people south of the outbreak’s epicenter. Almost 3,000 health workers have so far been vaccinated against the disease in Goma. More than 1,650 people have died in the current outbreak, while about 12 new cases are reported every day.

With the outbreak still confined to the provinces of North Kivu and Ituri, the response is at a critical juncture. WHO assesses the risk of spread to neighbouring provinces and countries as very high.

Chaired by the WHO Director-General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, and UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock, today’s event included the DRC Minister of Health, Dr. Oly Ilunga, the Minister for Solidarity and Humanitarian Action, Mr. Bernard Biando Sango, and the Secretary of State for International Development of the United Kingdom, the Rt. Hon. Rory Stewart, as keynote speakers.

Since January, there have been 198 attacks against the health response that have resulted in 7 deaths and left 58 healthcare workers and patients injured.

SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“Just when we start to get control of the virus in one area, it appears in another. And violence and insecurity continue to undermine the response. We are dealing with one of the world's most dangerous viruses in one of the world's most dangerous areas.”

Dr. Tedros also announced that he will reconvene the Emergency Committee as soon as possible to assess the latest development and advise him accordingly.

SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“Every attack makes it more difficult to trace contacts, vaccinate and perform safe burials. Every attack gives Ebola an opportunity to spread. Ebola gets a free ride in each and every attack. On top of that, community mistrust, political instability and the spread of myths and misinformation have been significant barriers.”

The areas of Ituri and North Kivu provinces affected by Ebola are characterised by poor infrastructure, political instability and ongoing conflict involving scores of armed militia groups and community mistrust of national authorities and outsiders.

SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“Together, we will end this outbreak. But unless we address its root causes - the weak health system, the insecurity and the political instability - there will be another outbreak. We often talk about the need to bridge the humanitarian-development nexus. This is the moment to practice what we preach.”

In May, the UN Secretary-General and the inter-agency humanitarian system bolstered joint UN action. This included the appointment of a UN Ebola Emergency Response Coordinator (UN EERC), Mr. David Gressly, who is based in the affected areas to ensure an enabling environment for the public health response, including appropriate security, logistics, political and community engagement, and action to address the concerns of affected communities.
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