Next week, the U.S. government will begin directing travelers from Guinea and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to six U.S. airports, according to the CDC. Airlines will collect information on all passengers boarding flights to the United States who have been in either country for the previous 21 days, and share the data with CDC and services. health centers for surveillance purposes.
The measures come as the United States and other countries grapple with the Covid-19 pandemic, with growing concern that the variants could push rates up again. It also follows two previous Ebola outbreaks in Africa that began in 2014 and 2018, leading to the deaths of thousands of people.
The CDC noted that this year’s outbreaks are in remote areas and the risk to the United States is extremely low. The agency said the travel restrictions were being implemented out of caution.
On Thursday, the World Health Organization said there were nine cases of Ebola and five deaths reported in Guinea, and eight cases and four deaths reported in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The Red Cross said in a statement that a network of more than 700 trained volunteers was “activated as part of a first wave of response and the government called on the population to respect hygiene and preventive measures. and to report signs of the disease to health authorities. ” The World Health Organization has helped control the recent outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo with vaccines and is helping purchase doses for Guinea.