Uganda confirms 7 Ebola cases, seeks to stem outbreak

Uganda confirmed seven cases of Ebola on Thursday as authorities try to trace 43 contacts of people known to have Ebola. Time Pictures: Ap.

Uganda confirmed seven cases of Ebola on Thursday as authorities try to trace 43 contacts of people known to have contracted Ebola, two days after the outbreak was announced.

A total of eight deaths, including a confirmed case of Ebola, were “attributable to the virus,” said Dr Henry Kiube, the Ugandan military officer in charge of monitoring cases of the disease. He stated that the situation is witnessing a “rapid development”, “we believe that cases can increase in a few days.”

The epicenter of the outbreak is Mubindi district in central Uganda, with its main town located along the road connecting to the capital, Kampala. Kyube told the World Health Organization that this land link and the many artisanal gold mines crowded in the area are of concern.

Ugandan authorities have yet to find the source of the outbreak and have not detected the first major case, but they were able to confirm an outbreak of the Sudanese type Ebola virus earlier this week after testing a sample from a 24-year-old man who initially had it. He was treated for other illnesses, including malaria and pneumonia, after seeking care in his hometown. Six other people in the same area, including three children, died in early September after suffering what local officials described as a rare disease.

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