(Bloomberg) -- The World Health Organization has sent a team to Uganda to help curb an Ebola outbreak after the East African country reported seven cases of the hemorrhagic disease.
“We are acting quickly and decisively to draw the reins on this outbreak,” Abdou Salam Gueye, the WHO’s regional emergency director for Africa, said in an emailed statement. The continent’s “stronger homegrown emergency readiness is proving ever more crucial in tackling outbreaks such as Ebola.”
As many as 43 contacts have been identified, with 10 people suspected of having the Ebola-Sudan strain of the virus receiving treatment at a hospital in Mubende, the district where the disease was confirmed this week after a 24-year-old man died in the area.
A rapid response is imperative not only because of the nature of the disease, but also because Mubende is in the central region of Uganda and includes a busy road leading to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the WHO said. This is the first time in a decade that Uganda has detected the Ebola-Sudan strain.
While there is currently no cure for Ebola, early identification of cases and treatment of symptoms greatly increases the chances of survival. A vaccine which is highly effective against the Ebola-Zaire strain doesn’t provide cross protection against the Ebola-Sudan strain, the WHO said.
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