Things you must know about Ebola

Two people including a five year old boy and his 50 year old grandmother have been confirmed dead since the outbreak of Ebola in Kasese.

The Health Ministry on Tuesday confirmed an Ebola outbreak in Uganda after three family members who had crossed from Congo tested positive of the virus.

“The ministry of health re-echoes its call on the general public to cooperate with the immigration, health and security officials to ensure effective screening at all entry points to prevent the spread of Ebola to other parts of the country,”the Director for General Health Services  Dr Charles Olaro said.

Uganda has been on high alert since an Ebola outbreak was reported in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2018. At least 1,600 people have been infected with the Ebola virus since it broke out in the North Kivu region of DRC. A confirmed 1,000 have died so far – the most affected being women and children.

Conflict in the Kivu region has made it difficult for health teams to monitor and contain the spread of the Ebola virus in the vast country.

The Nile Post looks at facts about the Ebola virus that everyone must know.

Signs and symptoms

  • Sudden onset fever
  • Headache
  • Intense body weakness
  • Muscle pain
  • Sore throat
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Skin rash
  • Bleeding from body openings

Spread

  • Soiled clothing of an infected person
  • Unsterilized equipment used by an infected person
  • Urine from an infected person
  • Saliva from an infected person
  • Vomit from an infected person
  • Sweat from an infected person
  • Faeces from an infected person
  • Handling infected wildlife whether dead or alive

Prevention

  • Avoid direct contact with body fluids from any person suspected or infected with Ebola
  • If you must handle a patient with Ebola, wear protective gear materials including gloves and masks.
  • Persons who have died of Ebola must be buried immediately by a trained burial team to prevent spread of the disease.
  • In case you handle a person suspected to be infected with Ebola, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.

 Appeal to the public

• Always wash your hands with soap and clean water.

• Government of Uganda appeals to communities in all DRC-Uganda boarder districts to suspend market days, mass gatherings such as in places of worship, burials, wedding.

• Report any suspected cases with signs and symptoms such as unexplained bleeding from anybody openings, vomiting blood, bloody diarrhoea, muscle pain, headache, fatigue, abdominal pain and sudden unexplained death to the nearest health facility.

• Suspend social norms like shaking hands and hugging.

• Avoid touching a patient suspected to have Ebola.

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