With the world’s focus on the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, a good news story receiving far less attention is that of Semida Masika, the last person in DR Congo conﬁrmed to have Ebola virus infection and discharged from care after her recovery on March 4. This important milestone is a remarkable achievement given the insecurity in DR Congo, which led to serious attacks on health-care facilities, workers, and patients, and a continual disabling of the outbreak response.
The 18-month Ebola outbreak in DR Congo has claimed 2264 lives and the number of cases exceeded 3000, making it the largest Ebola epidemic ever recorded after the west Africa outbreak of 2014–16. Unlike previous Ebola outbreaks, the national government took charge in coordinating the response, ably supported by WHO, donors, and other partners, including the African Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, which importantly allowed African experts rather than international experts to remain at the front and centre of the response.
Another unique feature was the multidisciplinary approach to the outbreak, which included employing more social scientists, applying new technologies, such as whole genome sequencing, and building community trust and engagement alongside a competent workforce for new surveillance and laboratory capacities. Having vaccines and treatments, plus the ability to conduct trials during the outbreak, was crucial and helped communities to have conﬁdence in the health-care system.
Most urgent now is ensuring no new cases emerge in the 42-day period that must pass infection-free before declaring the outbreak over, and the immediate US$20 million WHO needs to fund the remaining response. Concerns that COVID-19 will now steer atten- tion away from the need to close the deal with Ebola control in DR Congo are real. Donors must step up and all teams must continue their resolve and commitment to not leave until the job is done. Furthermore, new capacities and regional mechanisms to coordinate eﬀorts must be retained and properly funded after the outbreak ends so that the country’s strengthened health-care system can serve its people far beyond