KAMPALA, Aug. 5 — Uganda’s ministry of health has said it is on high alert following an outbreak of the deadly Ebola hemorrhagic fever in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Ruth Aceng, minister of health in a statement issued late on Friday said all travelers from DRC will be screened before being allowed into the country.
“Our rapid response teams have started training health workers on how to identify potential risks, enhance infection control and increase their level of awareness,” Aceng said.
She said apart from a screening center which has been set up at Entebbe International Airport, others have also been put in the border districts of Kasese, Ntoroko, Kanungu, Kisoro and Kabarole.
DRC on Wednesday confirmed an outbreak of Ebola in Beni, North Kivu, about 100 km from the Ugandan border post of Mpondwe in Kasese.
Twenty-six cases were reported in North Kivu, including 20 deaths.
This new outbreak comes shortly after the World Health Organization (WHO) had declared an end of the Ebola outbreak in another part of DRC.
The Ebola virus is highly contagious and causes a range of symptoms including fever, vomiting, diarrhea, generalized pain or malaise and in many cases internal and external bleeding.
Mortality rates of Ebola fever, according to WHO, are extremely high, with the human case-fatality rate ranging from 50 percent to 89 percent, depending on viral sub-type.