The Ebola epidemic that began in western Uganda arrived in Kampala yesterday, where at least one person, a nurse, died from the Ebola virus hemorrhagic fever. However, the infection did not occur in the capital but in the Kibale district, about 170 kilometers west of Kampala, but “a person or two” traveled to the capital, setting off all the alerts. In a statement published by the media, President Yoweri Museveni appealed to all Ugandans to remain vigilant against this deadly disease, urging them to avoid all “physical contact” to stop the spread of this terrible disease.
Yesterday, the authorities were looking for everyone who had been in contact with victims of Ebola, a highly contagious and highly lethal disease with no vaccine available. The 20 health professionals who cared for the injured person in the capital, who died in Mulago Hospital, have been placed in quarantine. The Ministry of Health wants to locate everyone who was with the victims. The president said the seven doctors who took care of one of the injured who arrived in Mulago – and died in hospital – and 13 health workers were in quarantine.
The epidemic began in the same district of Kibale where the nurse who was transferred to Mulago came and died. President Museveni has acknowledged the deaths of at least 14 people as of yesterday. Kibale is feared that the epidemic will spread to the villages around Kampala.
The first victim of the new Ebola outbreak was a pregnant woman. During his funeral, several members of his family were injured and subsequently died. This is the third outbreak of Ebola in Uganda in 12 years, a disease that was not yet known in the country. The deadliest was the first in 2000, which caused the death of more than half of the 425 injured.
“Be vigilant, avoid shaking hands, and do not bury anyone who has experienced symptoms similar to those of Ebola (high fever, vomiting, and sometimes diarrhea with bleeding) without contacting health workers who know how to do this,” the president said. Likewise, Musavini also recommended: “Avoid mixing because disease can also be transmitted through sexual contact.”
Announced experts from the Ugandan Ministry of Health World Health Organization (World Health Organization) and centers The United States for Disease Control and Prevention They traveled to Kibale to take measures to prevent the spread of one of the deadliest diseases, as it fought between 25% and 90% of cases. The scientific community is determined to find a treatment to combat the virus, but so far no effective vaccine has been found.
The president asked Ugandans to “inform the health authorities immediately” when they see the slightest sign of possible Ebola infection. After warning residents again, Musavini wished “good luck” to his countrymen.
The Ebola virus is generally spread through contact with an infected person’s body fluids, although there have also been cases due to contact with virus-carrying monkeys. Ebola is the name of a river in the north of the Democratic Republic of the Congo where the virus was discovered in 1976. Since then, 15 epidemics have been recorded in Africa, affecting more than 1,800 people and causing more than 1,300 deaths, according to the World Health Organization.