JUBA, Feb. 15 — The World Health Organization (WHO) has denied reports that some South Sudanese health workers vaccinated against the Ebola virus have been hospitalized after suffering serious side effects.
Local media reported on Thursday that a number of health workers who received the experimental Ebola vaccine have been hospitalized in Yambio, a border town close to Ebola-hit Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
WHO said in a statement to Xinhua that its vaccination teams followed up all beneficiaries of the vaccination exercise, and there are no cases of adverse side effects.
The UN health agency added that it has put in place standard operating producers to detect, investigate and report any serious adverse events to South Sudanese health authorities.
“The vaccination teams in Yei and Yambio followed up all the HCWs (Health Care workers) and FLWs (Front line workers) and there are no serious adverse reactions,” the WHO statement said.
“We consulted with the EVD (Ebola Virus Disease) vaccination team and it has been confirmed that so far, no serious AEs (Adverse Events) have been reported to the team during the follow up visits,” it added.
Late last month, South Sudan began vaccinating health workers and other front-line responders who are at high risk of contracting Ebola in case of an outbreak.
According to WHO, the vaccine offers protection against the Zaire strain of the virus, which has affected over 700 people and killed nearly 500 others in the neighboring DRC, which shares a long border with South Sudan.