Category: World / November 15, 2012 10:49 AM EST
Uganda said on Thursday (November 15) three people had died from an outbreak of the Ebola virus in its central region, near the capital Kampala. This is the latest bout of deadly fevers to strike the east African nation in recent months.
The new outbreak comes about a month after Uganda declared itself free of Ebola which struck in July in the western part of the country, close to the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where the disease first occurred in 1976.
Health Minister Christine Ondoa commented on the deadly outbreak:
"Another viral hemorrhagic fever Ebola has broken out in the country, this follows confirmation from the laboratory investigations done at the Uganda Virus Research Institute in Entebbe that two people - all from one family - in Katute sub county, sub parish in Nyimbwa, sub county Luwero district, had died of Ebola the Sudan strain,"
"A number of suspects have already been identified and attended to appropriately concurrently, there are five suspects being closely monitored by our surveillance team, one is admitted at Bombo military hospital, two at Mulago national referral hospital isolation facility while three (more) are still in the communities," she said
Ebola and Marbug are both highly infectious, spread mostly through contact with body fluids, and have high case fatalities.
Symptoms include bleeding, diarrhea and vomiting and while there is no cure for both diseases, some patients survive through treatment of symptoms.
A total of 16 people died from the last Ebola outbreak and the frequency of infections has been rising in recent years.
Uganda has managed to avoid a repeat of its worst episode of Ebola, in 2000, when 425 people were infected and more than half died.
A team of health experts including personnel from the World Health Organization and Doctors Without Borders has been sent to the health centers, to visit the suspected Ebola patients.