Guinea declares Ebola outbreak after at least three people die
Health officials confirm seven cases in the West African nation
Abidjan — At least three people have died in Guinea and several others have tested positive for the haemorrhagic fever, prompting authorities to declare an outbreak of the Ebola virus.
Seven people, four men and three women, tested positive after attending the funeral of a nurse who died from the disease, health officials said Sunday.
All patients from N’Zerekore in the southeast of the country were taken to hospital, one of them in the capital Conakry, the deputy head of the National Agency for Health Security, Buona Yattassaye, said by phone.
Guinea, the world’s biggest exporter of bauxite, was at the epicentre of the 2014/2016 Ebola epidemic that killed more than 11,000 people in West Africa.
Tracing teams would be sent to the affected region while authorities in the capital are working to secure Ebola vaccines, according to an e-mailed statement from the ministry of health. The nurse who fell ill in late January and was buried on February 1 was identified as the first case in the country since then.
“The nurse was likely infected by a patient,” the head of the agency, Sakoba Keita, told reporters in Conakry on Sunday. “We’re looking for that patient now,”
In neighbouring Liberia, President George Weah ordered health authorities to “engage villages and communities bordering Guinea and increase anti-Ebola measures”.
The Democratic Republic of Congo confirmed a fourth case of Ebola in North Kivu province where a resurgence of the virus was announced on February 7, provincial health minister Eugene Nzanzu Salita said on Sunday, Reuters reported.
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