News / Africa

Uganda Faces Fresh Outbreak of Hemorrhagic Fever

A laboratory specialist examines specimens of the Ebola virus at the Uganda virus research centre in Entebbe, 40km (25 miles) south from capital Kampala, May 17, 2011.  A laboratory specialist examines specimens of the Ebola virus at the Uganda virus research centre in Entebbe, 40km (25 miles) south from capital Kampala, May 17, 2011.
x
A laboratory specialist examines specimens of the Ebola virus at the Uganda virus research centre in Entebbe, 40km (25 miles) south from capital Kampala, May 17, 2011.
A laboratory specialist examines specimens of the Ebola virus at the Uganda virus research centre in Entebbe, 40km (25 miles) south from capital Kampala, May 17, 2011.
Uganda is struggling to contain the spread of the deadly Marburg virus, just weeks after an outbreak of Ebola killed at least 16 people.  
 
Last week, health officials declared an outbreak of the rare and deadly Marburg virus, a type of hemorrhagic fever similar to Ebola.  Five people have died so far, six have been placed in isolation and over 150 more are being monitored for symptoms.  One of the cases is being treated in the capital, Kampala.
 
The outbreak comes just two weeks after Uganda was declared free of Ebola earlier this month. At least 16 people died of Ebola, a virus which in the past has killed hundreds.
 
The cases of Marburg have all come from the southwestern district of Kabale, a heavily forested area where the vectors for the disease, monkeys and bats, are most commonly found. 
 
Ministry of Health spokesperson Rukia Nakamatte says the medical team working to contain the outbreak has considerable experience handling such diseases, which have been recurring in Uganda for decades.
 
“There is a team of experts that is in Kabale district.  These are experts that have handled the previous outbreaks, like the Ebola we had in Gulu in 2000.  Most of these people are trained in handling patients of Ebola and Marburg," she said. 
 
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, this is the first outbreak of Marburg in Uganda since 2008, when a Dutch tourist died after visiting a cave filled with bats.  But in terms of the number of fatalities, the current outbreak is the most severe in Uganda since the first reported cases in the 1960s.
 
The Marburg virus kills around 80 percent of those infected.  It is highly contagious, and is spread through contact with bodily fluids.  Symptoms of the virus include fever and headache, followed by a skin rash and, eventually, severe hemorrhaging.
 
Because Marburg is so contagious, local authorities in Kabale district have banned public gatherings, including school graduation ceremonies.  But Nakamatte says the Ministry’s advice is less extreme, calling on the public merely to exercise caution.
 
“We are not banning public gatherings, but we are calling them to minimize unnecessary gatherings," she said. 
 
Ugandan health authorities have formed a national task force to deal with the outbreak that includes the CDC and the World Health Organization.

You May Like

UN: 1 Million Somalis at Risk of Hunger

Group warns region is in dire need of humanitarian aid, with at least 200,000 children under age of five acutely malnourished as drought hits southern, central part of nation More

Human Rights Groups Allege Supression of Freedoms in Thailand

Thailand’s military, police have suppressed release of independent report assessing human rights in kingdom during first 100 days of latest coup More

Jennifer Lawrence Contacts FBI After Nude Photos Hacked

'Silver Linings Playbook' actress' photos were posted on image-sharing forum 4chan; Federal Bureau of Investigations is looking into matter More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forcesi
X
September 02, 2014 12:58 PM
A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Internet, Technology Offer New Tools for Journalists

The Internet and rapidly evolving technology is quickly changing how people receive news and how journalists deliver it. There are now more ways to tell a story than ever before. One school in Los Angeles is teaching the next generation of journalists with the help of a state-of-the-art newsroom. Elizabeth Lee has this report.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.
Video

Video Cost to Raise Child in US Continues to Rise

The cost of raising a child in the United States continues to rise. In its latest annual report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says middle income families with a child born in 2013 can expect to spend more than $240,000 before that child turns 18. And sending that child to college more than doubles that amount. VOA’s Deborah Block visited with a couple with one child in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn if the report reflects their lifestyle.
Video

Video Chaotic Afghan Vote Recount Threatens Nation’s Future

Afghanistan’s troubled presidential election continues to be rocked by turmoil as an audit of the ballots drags on. The U.N. says the recount will not be completed before September 10. Observers say repeated disputes and delays are threatening the orderly transfer of power and could have dangerous consequences. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.

AppleAndroid