Information about incidents and outbreaks of Ebola and Marburg, both viral haemorrhagic fevers (VHF).
Current incidents and outbreaks
There are currently no active Ebola virus disease (EVD) or Marburg virus disease (MVD) outbreaks.
Previous incidents and outbreaks: 2016 to 2023
Kagera region, Tanzania
An outbreak of MVD was announced by Tanzania’s health authorities on 21 March 2023, in the north-western region of Kagera. This was the first ever outbreak of MVD to be reported in the country.
The outbreak had a total of 9 cases (8 confirmed and 1 probable), including 6 deaths, and was declared over on 2 June 2023.
On 13 February 2023, an outbreak of MVD was declared by Equatorial Guinean health authorities, after a case of MVD was confirmed in Kié Ntem Province, in the north-east of the country. This was the first ever outbreak of MVD to be reported in Equatorial Guinea. Four provinces (Centro Sur, Kie Ntem, Litoral and Wele-Nzas) were affected.
The outbreak, which had a total of 17 confirmed (including 12 deaths), and 23 probable cases (all fatal), was declared over on 8 June 2023.
An outbreak of EVD was declared by Uganda’s health authorities on 20 September 2022, after a case of EVD caused by Sudan ebolavirus was confirmed in the Mubende District, Central Region.
This was the fifth outbreak of Sudan ebolavirus to be reported in Uganda. The country last reported an outbreak of Sudan ebolavirus in 2012.
The outbreak was declared over on 11 January 2023. In total, there were 164 cases (142 confirmed and 22 probable) and 77 deaths (55 confirmed and 22 probable). Cases were reported from 9 districts: Mubende, Kassanda, Kampala, Masaka and Wakiso in Central Region; Kyegegwa, Kagadi and Bunyangabu in Western Region; and Jinja in Eastern Region.
On 21 August 2022, the Ministry of Health of the DRC announced that a new laboratory-confirmed case of EVD had been detected in the province of North Kivu. Genomic sequencing indicated that this case likely represented a new flare-up of the 2018 to 2020 North Kivu/Ituri EVD outbreak, initiated by transmission of Ebola virus from a persistently infected survivor, or a survivor who experienced a relapse.
This was the fourth EVD outbreak to be reported in the province since 2018.
The outbreak had a total of 1 confirmed case, which was fatal, and was declared over on 27 September 2022.
On 7 July 2022, Ghanaian health authorities announced the preliminary findings of 2 cases of MVD in the southern Ashanti region. An outbreak of MVD was subsequently declared on 17 July, following confirmatory testing of samples from one of the deceased cases, as performed by the Institut Pasteur in Dakar, Senegal.
The outbreak, which resulted in a total of 3 confirmed cases (a family cluster), including 2 deaths, was declared over on 16 September 2022.
The DRC’s Ministry of Health announced a new laboratory confirmed case of EVD in Mbandaka City, Équateur Province on 23 April 2022. This was the third outbreak in the province since 2018.
Genome sequencing revealed that, whilst the new genome was closely related to those sequenced during the Équateur 2020 outbreak, it fell outside the 2020 outbreak clade, indicating that this case represents a new spill over event from a host reservoir and is not directly linked to the Équateur 2018 or Équateur 2020 EVD outbreaks.
On 8 October 2021, the DRC’s Ministry of Health announced that a new laboratory confirmed case of EVD had been detected in Butsili Health Area, Béni Health Zone in North Kivu Province. Earlier this year, an EVD outbreak in North Kivu Province was declared over on 3 May 2021.
The outbreak was declared over on 16 December 2021. During the outbreak, 8 confirmed (6 deaths) and 3 probable (3 deaths) cases were reported across 3 health areas (Butsili, Bundji and Kanzulinzuli) in the Béni Health Zone. More than 1,800 people were vaccinated in a campaign that launched just 5 days after the first case was detected.
On 9 August 2021, an outbreak of MVD was declared in the Guéckédou Prefecture, South West Guinea, following laboratory confirmation of a single case. The outbreak occurred in the same N’zérékoré health region where 2 EVD outbreaks occurred in 2014 and 2021 (February to June 2021).
This was the first known case of MVD in Guinea and in West Africa. Only one case – the index patient who was diagnosed with the virus posthumously – was recorded during the outbreak, which was declared over on 15 September 2021.
Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the 2021 Guinean MVD was related to strains from the 2004 to 2005 MVD outbreak in Angola and to Marburg virus sequences obtained from bats in Sierra Leone during 2017 to 2018.
On 14 August 2021, Côte d’Ivoire’s Ministry of Health informed WHO of a suspected EVD case who was hospitalised in the commercial capital, Abidjan, after arriving from Guinea.
Following the announcement, and in line with WHO’s ‘no regrets’ policy, health authorities with support from WHO launched a public health response during which over 140 case contacts were followed up across the two countries. No contacts developed symptoms for the disease or tested positive for Ebola virus.
Re-confirmatory testing performed by the French National Reference Centre for Viral Haemorrhagic Fevers found no evidence of EVD in the original samples from the suspected case, and so the response was stood down on 31 August 2021.
On 14 February 2021, an outbreak of EVD was declared in Gouécké, in the prefecture of N’zérékoré, South East Guinea. Between 14 February and 19 June 2021, a total of 23 cases (16 confirmed and 7 probable) were identified in 4 sub-prefectures of N’zérékoré Prefecture. Of these confirmed and probable cases, 11 survived and 12 died. Five of the cases were health workers and one was a traditional health practitioner. A total of 10,873 people were vaccinated during the outbreak, including 885 case contacts and 2,779 front line workers.
This was Guinea’s second EVD outbreak, the first being the 2014 to 2016 West African EVD outbreak.
On 7 February 2021, DRC’s 12th EVD outbreak was declared in Butembo, a city in North Kivu Province in North East DRC. During the outbreak, there were 12 cases reported (11 confirmed), including 6 fatalities and 6 recoveries. The outbreak was declared over on 3 May 2021, just 3 months after the first case was reported, which was attributed to the prompt response of DRC’s health authorities and healthcare workers drawing upon their previous experiences in tackling outbreaks within the country.
Between 1 June and 18 November 2020, 130 EVD cases (119 confirmed and 11 probable), including 55 deaths, were reported from 13 of the 18 health zones in the province. This was DRC’s 11th EVD outbreak.
2018 to 2020
Between 1 August 2018 and 25 June 2020, 3,470 cases, 2,287 deaths and 1,171 survivors of EVD were reported across 3 provinces in DRC: Ituri, North Kivu and South Kivu. This outbreak, DRC’s 10th, is the longest lasting EVD incident in the country’s history, and the second-largest in the world after the 2014 to 2016 EVD outbreak in West Africa. The response to this outbreak was particularly challenging as it took place in an active conflict zone.
United Republic of Tanzania
On 10 September 2019, WHO was made aware of unofficial reports of an unexplained death of a person in Dar es Salaam. It appears probable this was an Ebola-related death.
Between 8 May and 24 July, 2018 DRC reported their ninth EVD outbreak which resulted in 54 cases (38 confirmed and 16 probable), including 33 deaths.
Bas-Uele Province, DRC
Between May and July 2017 an EVD outbreak consisting of 8 cases (5 confirmed), including 4 fatalities was recorded. This was DRC’s eighth EVD outbreak.
West Africa Ebola outbreak, 2014 to 2016
WHO confirmed an outbreak of EVD in south-eastern Guinea in March 2014. This was the first time an outbreak had been diagnosed in this part of Africa, and the index case was traced back to December 2013.
The outbreak spread to neighbouring and nearby countries, particularly Liberia and Sierra Leone, and became the largest ever known outbreak of this disease. It continued for more than 2 years and a total of 28,616 confirmed, probable and suspected cases were reported in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, with 11,310 deaths.
Linked Ebola outbreaks and cases in other countries (2014 to 2015)
Two importations leading to a total of 8 cases.
Twenty cases in Lagos and Port Harcourt, following an initial importation from Liberia.
A single case imported from Guinea.
One case in a returning healthcare worker.
One case in a healthcare worker involved in the care of patients repatriated from West Africa.
One case was imported into Scotland in December 2014. The patient was a healthcare worker who had been working in an Ebola treatment centre in Sierra Leone.
A single EVD case was imported from Liberia into Texas in September 2014. Transmission to 2 healthcare workers subsequently occurred. A further case of EVD was confirmed in a humanitarian aid worker who returned from Guinea in October 2014.
You can find more information on EVD outbreaks prior to 2014.