The Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and now Uganda, is a matter of grave concern. To date, 2,014 people have been infected, of whom 1,411 have died. The fact that the epicentre of the outbreak is in a conflict zone makes this an extremely difficult crisis to resolve.
So far, Ireland has provided over €2.6 million to UN and NGO partners both for outbreak control programmes in DRC and for preparedness efforts in Uganda. These include support for community mobilisation, sanitation, health & hygiene promotion and health worker training.
Ireland is also engaging through the EU. To date, the EU has provided €21.5 million to the UN, the Red Cross, and to NGOs for access to health care, prevention and control of infections, epidemiological surveillance, safe burials, contact tracing, logistics, and coordination. This includes new funding of €3.5 million announced on 13 June to enable rapid detection and reaction to Ebola cases in Uganda and South Sudan.
Officials from my Department are liaising with US State Department, given the leading US role in the international response.
Irish Embassies in Kampala and Dar es Salaam - which has responsibility for relations with DRC - are liaising closely with local partners and donors, as well as with Irish citizens in the affected regions. My Department, including the two Embassies, is working with partners in Ireland, including HSE and the Department of Health, implementing lessons learned from previous situations including the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.