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Uganda confirms first Ebola case linked to DRC outbreak

12 June 2019

"Although there have been numerous previous alerts, this is the first confirmed case in Uganda during the Ebola outbreak on-going in neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo", WHO said.

According to the Twitter thread, the confirmed case is in a 5-year-old Congolese boy who traveled from the DRC into Uganda on June 9, 2019.

Congo's health ministry said on Monday that it has recorded 2,062 cases, including 1,390 deaths, since the epidemic began in August.

There have been more than 2,000 confirmed and probable cases of the Ebola virus in Congo since August, with almost 1,400 deaths.

The child is now receiving supportive care at the Bwera Ebola Treatment Unit, and all contacts are being followed. Uganda officials found the family members at the Kagando hospital, where the boy's Ebola case was confirmed.

Uganda and World Health Organization "have dispatched a Rapid Response Team to Kasese to start contact tracing and management of cases that are likely to occur", the global agency said.

Noncontact thermometers allow health workers to check the temperature of people from Congo at the Ebola screening point in western Uganda. Health workers have been trained to recognize the disease, and almost 4,700 health care workers in 165 health facilities have been vaccinated against the disease with an experimental inoculation that has been effective at preventing widespread transmission in Congo.

In April, Uganda health workers conducted a simulation to assess preparedness, in the event of Ebola spreading to the country. Health care workers have widely deployed an effective Ebola vaccine in the affected DRC areas and intensively worked to contain cases, but their response has repeatedly been hampered by violence from the many insurgency groups, including attacks on health care workers and facilities. The village health teams were also observed as being prepared and competent in identifying suspected cases while disseminating information. But worldwide spread is one of the major criteria the United Nations agency considers before such a declaration.

Uganda confirms first Ebola case linked to DRC outbreak