Health experts investigate four suspected Ebola cases in Masaka

Health experts in Masaka district are examining the death of four persons who presented symptoms akin to the deadly Ebola virus.

The first suspicious death was reported late last month from Kasaka Parish in Buwunga Sub County. Medics say that the deceased, identified as Wilberforce Ssenkubuge, had advanced fever, accompanied with abnormal pain, immense vomiting, bloody stool and yellow eyes.

Masaka District Health Officer Dr Stuart Musisi says that three similar deaths have so far occurred and the district continues to receive patients with similar symptoms. Musisi adds that the reported cases are from the neighboring two parishes of Kasaka and Mazinga in Buwunga Sub County.

He says that initial investigations have established that latter victims had direct contact with the first case.  He adds that another four patients have been isolated at Masaka Regional Referral Hospital awaiting the outcome of the laboratory tests conducted earlier.

Meanwhile Masaka Regional Hospital Principal Administrator Eleazar Mugisha says that an isolation ward has already been set up at the facility. He says the Ministry of Health has dispatched a backup team to Masaka to help them contain the situation.

He also urged members of the public to be vigilant and report any suspected cases to a mobile team that has been sent to the communities in order to be able to contain the disease.
14 years which have been quickly contained through a combination of epidemiological luck and a well-coordinated response system operating at several levels of the health service.

The most devastating was the first Ebola outbreak in the northern district of Gulu in 2000 which infected 425 people and killed 224.

Over 11,000 people died following an outbreak of Ebola that swept through the West African states of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone in 2014. It remains the most severe outbreak of Ebola since the discovery of Ebola viruses in 1976.