Published: Fri, November 09, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Ebola outbreak may be beyond control - CDC

Ebola outbreak may be beyond control - CDC

Meanwhile, Uganda will soon begin vaccinating frontline health workers against Ebola as the threat increases of the deadly virus.

The inoculations, using an experimental vaccine, began on Wednesday and are part of a wider Ebola prevention plan in a country that has faced multiple Ebola outbreaks since 2000.

Tom Inglesby, MD, director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in Baltimore, said if the Ebola outbreak becomes endemic in the Congo's North Kivu province, it shows "we've lost the ability to trace contacts, stop transmission chains and contain the outbreak".

Some sick people have refused to go to treatment centres, health-care workers are still being infected, and some people are dying of Ebola or spreading the virus to new areas.

Uganda is the first country in the world to give the vaccine without an active outbreak of the disease, but is judged to be at very high risk. "Once one is vaccinated, there could be just a normal reaction and that's why we follow up those who have been vaccinated", Dr Tegegn said. The last outbreak, contained in July, sickened 53 people and killed 33.

"Uganda has taken a very huge step in mitigating the risk of Ebola among health workers".

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No fewer than 3,000 health care and frontline workers in the five high-risk western districts bordering the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo are targeted.

WHO said in a statement released on Wednesday that it is "highly likely" that Ugandans in districts near the border will be infected with the virus, due to their close proximity to the epicentre of the outbreak, and high population movements due to trade, social and cultural connections and the relatively easy access to health services.

In Congo, where thousands of people have been given the experimental Ebola vaccine, a worrying number of vaccinated health workers have been infected. Dozens more have died since then, according to a tally reported by Congo's health ministry. The conflict threatens health workers trying to battle the virus."I can not access entire villages".

Ebola first appeared in 1976 in Sudan and Congo, and gets its name from a river in the latter nation.

A World Health Organization assessment of the situation in DRC released on 22 October, warned of the potential for the virus to spread into Rwanda, South Sudan and Burundi, as well as Uganda, and called on these countries to step up readiness efforts.

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