Ebola Crisis



On 1st of August 2018, an Ebola outbreak was declared in Eastern DR Congo.
In the midst of the second most severe humanitarian crisis in the world, Medair is responding to the second worst Ebola outbreak in recorded history.

Probable Cases

Confirmed Cases



Stay Informed

For regular updates, sign up to our email list or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and our Twitter feeds @Medair_DRC, @MedairInt and @MedairPress.

Learn more about Medair’s work in DR Congo.

July 15th, 2019

The second largest Ebola outbreak in history

Luke Hunt serves on our emergency response team in the Ebola-affected country to help stop the spread of the outbreak. Here is an update from Luke.

June 12th, 2019

Press Release: Treating patients has never been enough: the ebola outbreak in DR Congo climbs to over 2,000 cases

The Ebola outbreak in DR Congo has now recorded over 2,000 confirmed and probable cases. Despite the commitment and tenacity of Medair and other responding NGOs, the number of people infected with the deadly Ebola virus continues to accelerate.

December 17th, 2018

Staff blog: Finding a way to reach the most vulnerable

Hello, I’m Esther! I’m writing to you from the town of Beni in Nord Kivu, where I’m covering for the Base Manager while she is on leave.

November 21st, 2018

Ebola screening

D.R. Congo is facing the worst Ebola outbreak in the in the country’s recorded history. Medair continues to work to battle against this outbreak.

September 19th, 2018

Story: Fighting ebola; different places, same commitment

Dr Trina Helderman led Medair’s response to the Ebola crisis in Sierra Leone in 2014, and joined the Emergency Response Team in DR Congo when the outbreak struck last month.

August 28th, 2018

Trained, Equipped, Protected

Medair facilitates Ebola screening at Mbau Health Centre, DR Congo

August 24th, 2018

Blog: Fencing in Ebola

Medair’s current focus in the response to the Ebola outbreak is to establish screening points and fencing at select health facilities in Oicha and Beni health zones.

August 8th, 2018

First update on Ebola

Report from our Senior health & nutrition advisor

August 6th, 2018

Press release: Ebola response in the democratic republic of congo

In response to the recent Ebola outbreak in Beni Territory, Medair is working closely with health partners on the ground to provide a complementary and rapid response to the outbreak.

August 1st, 2018

Ebola outbreak was declared in Eastern DR Congo.

The Ebola outbreak started just North of Beni


Medair is participating strongly in the response, focusing on:

  • Preventing further spread of Ebola Virus Disease, through supporting infection prevention and control, including WASH, in health facilities and communities
  • Enabling affected people to participate in Ebola prevention and response interventions and encouraging early care-seeking, through community engagement
  • Ensuring suspected Ebola patients receive timely care, through safe testing and treatment at transit centres

All of Medair’s response work starts with respectful engagement with communities affected by the outbreak. This is the foundation upon which the other components of our response sit.

Medair meets with influential leaders and key groups to discuss Ebola prevention and response measures, and health workers to speak with their neighbours by doing door-to-door visits. 

Where Ebola cases emerge, Medair supports health facilities in the surrounding area to prevent and control infection. Staff working at these health facilities are trained and equipped to safely recognise, isolate, and refer patients to specialised testing and treatment.


 Anyone who visits the health facility is screened for Ebola symptoms, and checks are also done on in-patients. Where funding allows, Medair implements more comprehensive WASH interventions, ensuring that health facilities have enough latrines and showers, water in sufficient quality and quantity, and a functioning waste management system. These enable staff members to put infection prevention and control procedures into practice.

Medair’s WASH work is not limited to health facilities; support has also been provided to schools and communities in areas that have either been directly affected by the Ebola outbreak, or have been deemed at high risk of being affected.

Medair does not operate any Ebola Treatment Centres, but operates transit centres in key areas. At these transit centres, suspected Ebola patients receive standardised medical care while blood samples are sent to the nearest laboratory for testing. If it is confirmed that the patient has Ebola, they are swiftly referred to the closest treatment centre. Transit centres are staffed by a locally recruited team, and represent a trusted, accessible option for people living nearby to access treatment quickly.

Highlights from Medair’s first 12 months of Ebola Response in Eastern DR Congo:

  • Engaged with communities in 67 health areas to spread knowledge of prevention measures and how to recognise and safely refer suspected Ebola patients
  • Supported over 100 health facilities to continue providing services safely
  • Trained 1,897 health workers on infection prevention and control
  • Tested and treated 683 patients with suspected Ebola at a transit centre, referring those who tested positive for further specialised treatment.

The Ebola outbreak receives much more news coverage and the response is much better funded relative to other crises in DR Congo, where:

  • An estimated 4.5 million people are internally displaced[2].
  • From 2012-2017, over 150,000 people died of malaria[3].
  • From 1 January to 14 September 2019, there were 187,000 cases of measles, with over 3,700 deaths[4].

These crises reinforce the importance of ensuring that health facilities are supported to provide primary health care: ensuring that people continue to access services and do not needlessly die of malaria, that infants do not miss vaccinations, and that mothers give birth in a hygienic environment, assisted by skilled health care providers.

Medair’s emergency response work in DR Congo is made possible by the generous support of the US Agency for International Development, the EC Directorate-General for EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the UN Development Programme (UNDP), and generous private donors.

What can I do to help?

We are very grateful for your support. You can help by:

  • praying for affected communities and organisations on the ground
  • raising awareness about this crisis within your family, friends and community
  • making a donation; your gift will be allocated to the Ebola outbreak in DR Congo, and future Medair emergency responses around the world.

[1] According to the United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, DR Congo has the second most people in urgent need of humanitarian assistance (12.8M in 2019), after Yemen (24.1M in 2019).

[2] According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA): https://www.unocha.org/drc

[3] According to the WHO malaria report 2018: https://www.who.int/malaria/publications/world-malaria-report-2018/report/en/

[4] According to a WHO presentation “Situation de la Réponse a l’épidémie de la Rougeole en RDC,” released on 25th September 2019.