Transmission of Ebola within the health system (9)

7 May, 2019

Dear HIFA colleagues,

I requested clarification from WHO about the details of Dr Michael J Ryan's (WHO Assistant Director-General, Emergency Preparedness and Response) statement: "If we look at the intense outbreak we had in Beni City... we estimate that 80-85% of the transmission in that outbreak was occurring inside the health system."

I have received this response from Soce Fall at WHO Geneva, which I am sharing with his permission:


In North Kivu, at least 30% of the Ebola cases are from nosocomial transmission within the health facilities. It's impomportant to know that most of the so called HFs are informal private clinics combining traditional and modern medicines without trained personnel. That's why the minimum requisite for Infections prevention and control does not exist. Despite that, close to 85% of confirmed cases have visited at least one HF in Butembo. That's why HF centered IPC PC and surveillance‚ are crucial in this response.

Best regards‚


HIFA profile: Soce Fall works with WHO, Switzerland. Professional interests: Health security, emergencies, epidemiology, public health. Email address: socefall AT


Best wishes, Neil

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HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of the HIFA global health campaign (Healthcare Information For All - ), a global community with more than 19,000 members in 177 countries, interacting on six global forums in four languages. Twitter: @hifa_org FB: