DRC Ebola Outbreak: WHO confirms Case in Uganda

DRC Ebola Outbreak: WHO confirms Case in Uganda

DRC Ebola Outbreak: WHO confirms Case in Uganda

Medical tests confirmed the boy's three-year-old brother and 51-year-old grandmother were also infected with the virus, World Health Organization added.

Uganda on Tuesday announced that Ebola had broken out in the country after tests from a five year old boy in Kasese district neighboring Ebola-hit eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo turned positive. Uganda now has three confirmed Ebola cases.

Health officials from Uganda and DR Congo, above, met immediately to discuss the situation.

The ministry called upon all Rwandans and visitors to Rwanda who develop symptoms of Ebola or have been in contact with a patient with its symptoms or who participated in a burial ceremony of a known case to seek medical attention immediately at the nearest health facility. Authorities say they entered Uganda, where the boy is receiving treatment and relatives are isolated. Two of them developed symptoms and were tested.

The so-called Insurance Window of the PEF, which consists of $105 million of pandemic risk linked swaps and the $320 million of pandemic catastrophe bonds, which provide the necessary reinsurance capital to back the facility, has so far not been triggered by the Congo Ebola disease outbreak as it has remained contained within the single country. The virus can spread quickly via close contact with bodily fluids of those infected and can be fatal in up to 90 per cent of cases.

The Uganda Health ministry said the boy's parents are being monitored.

The World Health Organization announced an emergency committee would meet Friday to determine whether to upgrade its assessment of the situation to "a public health emergency of global concern", having held off previously because the outbreak was contained to one part of DRC.

The Red Cross meanwhile said it was scaling up efforts to contain the spread of the virus since it was detected in Uganda.

However Aceng said the victims will only be repatriated on condition that they consent and if they refuse, they will treated and buried in Uganda in case they are to pass on. A World Health Organization statement said he entered on Sunday with his family through the Bwera border post. Some people wade across the shallow Lubiriha River.

Screening for the killer Ebola virus at the border was intensified on Wednesday, following the outbreak in Kasese in western Uganda.

In addition, a team comprising of medical specialists especially laboratory scientists will work hand in hand with local Ebola experts to carry out tests on suspected cases.

Experts noted that Uganda, which has been on high alert for possible spread of Ebola and has already vaccinated many frontline healthworkers, is relatively well prepared and should be able to limit the virus' spread. In 2000, an outbreak in the north infected 425 people and killed more than half of them.

The announcement of the first cross-border case puts new pressure on WHO to declare the Ebola outbreak a global health emergency. Nevertheless, spread beyond one country is one of the major criteria the United Nations agency considers before making such a declaration.

New cases in Congo bring the total to more than 2062, which includes 1968 confirmed and 94 probable cases.

"This epidemic is in a truly frightening phase and shows no sign of stopping anytime soon", he said in a statement.

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