THIS WEEK: Uganda declared Marburg free
Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Backed by a Sh3.5billion outbreak response, Uganda has contained the recent Marburg Viral Disease outbreak and declared the country free of the infectious disease. The declaration comes after completion of 42 days of the post-Marburg surveillance countdown period for the contacts of the last confirmed case, as per the World Health Organization (WHO) requirement for declaring an end to an outbreak of any Viral Haemorrhagic Fever (VHF). “Today, marks 42 days since the death of the last confirmed case which occurred on 26th October 2017, indicating that the outbreak which occurred in Kween and Kapchorwa districts has been contained. The Ministry officially declares the country free from Marburg disease,” said State Minister of health in charge of General Duties Sarah Opendi on Dec.08
The first reported case was 35-year-old herdsman from Kween district who had made frequent hunting missions to Kaptum sub-county, where there are caves with large populations of Egyptian fruit bats, and died after exhibiting signs of Marburg on September 25th, 2017. Other people developed signs and others that had been in contact with them were isolated at various centers in Eastern Uganda. By Nov.16 all those under surveillance had completed their 21 days of monitoring to account for the 21-day incubation period of the virus. An additional 21 days of intensive surveillance was carried out in the affected districts to comply with the WHO requirement for management and control of viral Haemorrhagic fevers and registered no other confirmed patients.
Marburg is a highly infectious viral haemorrhagic fever that is spread through direct contact with body fluids such as blood, saliva, vomitus, stool and urine of an infected person.