Lessons learned? Responding to Ebola in the DRC

18 March 2020 14:00 - 15:30 GMT


Wendy Fenton @WendyFenton1 – Coordinator of the Humanitarian Practice Network, ODI



Linda Mobula @LindaMobula Assistant Professor of Medicine, Johns Hopkins and Research Associate, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health

Theresa Jones @Theresa_E_Jones – Clinical Psychologist and Senior Research Associate, Anthrologica

Bernard Balibuna – Country Representative, CAFOD, DRC

Natalie Roberts @docnatDirector of Studies, MSF-CRASH (Médecins Sans Frontières, Centre de réflexion sur l'action et les savoirs humanitaires)


The world’s second largest outbreak of Ebola was declared on 1 August 2018 in the Democratic Republic of Congo. More than 2,200 people have died and over 3,300 have been infected. The response to Ebola has been complicated by conflict between central government, local political actors and armed groups in the affected areas. Rumours about the virus and the response have also been spread and shaped by that conflict.

Attempts have been made to apply key lessons from the 2014-15 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, such as the need for strong surveillance and outbreak control strategies and the importance of understanding the behaviours, practices and perceptions of communities and of engaging them actively in the response. The identification and trial use of effective vaccines during the outbreak has been an important and promising development. Yet, despite these efforts, cases of Ebola continue to be reported.  

Drawing on articles from the Humanitarian Exchange, this webinar will discuss to what degree the lessons learned from the West Africa Ebola outbreak have been taken into account in the DRC response and how barriers to containment of the disease could be better addressed.