The Ebola outbreak in the western district of Kasese has become increasingly worrying after the number of those associated with the haemorrhagic disease hit 10 last evening.
The first case to be confirmed on Tuesday was that of a five-year-old boy, who tested positive and later died. The others cases include the deceased boy’s grandmother and his three-year-old young brother, who also tested positive and were admitted at the isolation facility that was established at Bwera General Hospital.
Dr Jane Ruth Aceng, the Health minister, said there are more seven suspects, including two men, two women and a six-months-old baby, who came from the DR Congo. All the cases are at the isolation facility.
“There are two other Ugandans who are completely different cases from this family but have shown signs and symptoms of Ebola and have been brought here at the isolation facility. So that brings us to seven suspected cases and three confirmed cases,” Dr Aceng said in an interview yesterday.
“Right now, there are no probable cases because those which were available tested positive and the ministry is keeping a very close watch on the families,” she added.
Dr Aceng also revealed that they are going to resume the vaccination of frontline health workers on Friday this week, who will be joining the more than 700 that were vaccinated last year.
Ebola in DR Congo
At least 2,000 cases involving 1,357 deaths have been recorded in the DRC’s North Kivu and Ituri provinces since the epidemic started in May last year, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO)
There were rumours of the disease outbreak in Uganda, especially in the border districts of Kasese and Hoima, which government has always come out to refute.
Other most at risk districts include Kabarole, Bunyangabu, Bundibugyo and Ntoroko.
As such, government, together with WHO, laid various strategies to prevent the spread of the disease, especially in districts that are neighboring the heamorrhagic stricken DR Congo.
Among others measures, government, through the Ministry of Health, reactivated surveillance teams and taskforces at Uganda’s different border points with DR Congo to control movements and conduct screening for those entering the country.
Also for the very first time, government in November last year started vaccination against the deadly Ebola haemorrhagic fever
The Ebola virus belongs to the Filoviridae family (filovirus) and is comprised of five distinct species: Zaïre, Sudan, Côte d’Ivoire, Bundibugyo and Reston. According to the World Health Organisation, Ebola virus is transmitted by direct contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other body fluids of infected persons.