Tuesday October 14 2014

Uganda is now Marburg-free, says Health ministry



The image of the Marburg virus net photo

The image of the Marburg virus net photo 

By EMMANUEL AINEBYOONA

Kampala. The government has declared the country Marburg-free as no new case has been registered in more than a fortnight.
According to the state Minister for Primary Healthcare, Ms Sarah Opendi, there is no new confirmed case of Marburg since the first that occurred on September 30, involving a health worker who was working at Mengo Hospital, who died of the hemorrhagic fever.
“We continue to receive and investigate all alert cases from different parts of the country. None has so far tested positive for the Marburg virus,” Ms Opendi said at Marburg status-news conference held in Kampala yesterday.
Ms Opendi noted: “There are five suspects in isolation in three isolation facilities. The first one is admitted at Entebbe National Isolation Centre, a nurse who got into contact with the confirmed case.”
She added that the nurse has since tested negative of the hemorrhagic fever virus but is awaiting another confirmatory test.
Ms Opendi added that two other suspects are admitted to Mulago hospital Isolation Centre, and additional two-male suspects at a health facility in Ibanda district.
She, however, noted that the suspects did not get into contact with the Marburg case but presented signs of the infectious hemorrhagic fever and are awaiting results from the Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI).
Currently, 149 persons in Uganda are under observation for possible signs of the Marburg virus.
They are, 80 in Kampala district, 11 from Mpigi District, and 58 from Kasese District.

Minister given phones

Minister for Primary Healthcare Sarah Opendi received a donation of 150 mobile handsets loaded with three months’ airtime from Airtel Uganda to enable the ministry in detecting suspected cases of Marburg and Ebola in high-risk areas. According to Ms Opendi, the mobile phones will help nurses in breaking the communication gap in those areas.

eainebyoona@ug.nationmedia.com

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