Risk of Ebola Spreading to Neighboring Countries Very Minimal-WHO

There is very minimal risk of the current outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease in Uganda spreading to the neighboring countries, this is according to a risk assessment study by the World Health Organization (WHO).

According to Dr. Patrick Otim, the WHO Incident Manager for Ebola Outbreak, in their assessment, they mapped population movement within the country, six neighboring countries, and others on the continent and found the highest risk to be a national and very limited risk for the virus spilling to other countries.

So far, Uganda has recorded a total of 131 cases and forty-nine have succumbed to viral hemorrhagic. While the disease first broke out in Mubende in late September, cases have been recorded from the neighboring Kassanda district which is the new epicenter.  In addition, the other six districts of Bunyangabu, Kagadi, Kampala, Wakiso, Kyegegwa, and lately Masaka have had cases.

But, according to WHO, the strict measures instituted by the country including a lockdown in the epicenter and screening at points of entry in the country are helping keep the virus from transmitting only within the country.

Dr. Henry Kyobe Bbosa, the Ebola Incident Commander in the Ministry of Health said they have already instituted a No–Fly directive at Entebbe Airport for contacts of positive cases to curb any risk of transmission.

So far, 2,187 contacts are listed for follow-up.  Kyobe says they keep a kin eye on these ones using their two-approach policy whereby those within Kampala and the neighboring districts undergo institutional quarantine at Mulago National Referral Hospital. Those in the Mubende and Kassanda epicenters are under self-quarantine at their homes with constant visits from health teams.   

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