A resurgence of Bubonic plague in Ituri province, DRC, is putting young lives at risk warns UNICEF

The research focused on three health zones in Ituri, where more than 490 cases were recorded between 2020 and 2021, with 20 fatalities. Some 578 cases, and 44 plague-related deaths, occurred throughout the entire province during the same period. 

“The really worrying thing here is that we’ve got plague reported in areas which had not seen a case for more than 15 years, and many more cases in areas where they had very few or none previously,” said Izzy Scott Moncrieff, UNICEF Social Sciences Analytics Cell (CASS) Field Supervisor.   “There are grave consequences for children because they are more exposed to the risk factors of plague.”  

According to WHO, From epidemiological week 1 to 25, 2021 (ending on 27 June), 117 suspected plague cases including 13 deaths were reported in eight health zones in Ituri province. From January to December 2020, 461 suspected plague cases of which 31 deaths were reported in eight health zones of Ituri. The health zones of Biringi, Rethy, and Aru reported the most cases. This includes bubonic and pneumonic plague cases.

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