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Abstract

Prioritization of Zoonotic Diseases in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2016

Introduction: The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is a vast country with 77 million inhabitants and presents several risk factors for the emergence and re-emergence of zoonotic diseases. Over the past four decades, it has experienced several epidemics such as those caused by the viruses of Ebola, Marburg, Monkeypox, yellow fever… In a context of limited resources to face all zoonoses, it was crucial to prioritize them in order to direct the few available resources to those that have a great impact on human and animal health.

Methods: A 2-day workshop for prioritizing zoonotic diseases using a semiquantitative approach developed by CDC was organized in the five steps: (1) Elaboration of a list of zoonoses to prioritize, (2) Elaboration of prioritization criteria, (3) Formulation of categorical questions for each criterion, (4) Ranking of criteria, and (5) Ranking of zoonotic diseases.

Results: In order of importance, six criteria were selected: 1) Severity of the disease (in humans), 2) Extent of the disease, 3) Potential for transmission, 4) Capabilities of diagnosis, 5) Capabilities of disease prevention and control, and 6) Socio-economic impact of the disease. The following six diseases have been prioritized in DRC: 1) Rabies, 2) Haemorrhagic fevers, 3) Influenza virus infections, 4) Salmonellosis 5) Monkeypox and 6) Arboviral diseases.

Conclusion: The prioritization of zoonoses was an opportunity for experts in animal health, human health and wildlife to work together within the framework of "One Health" by setting common targets for their interventions.


Author(s): Muhemedi S*, Masumu J, Lubula L, Kabambi P and Okitolonda E

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