Ebola infections, deaths rise in Uganda
The death toll from Ebola in Uganda has risen to 21 as confirmed cases hit 34 as of Monday September 26, data from the Health ministry indicates.
This information is contained in the update given last evening by Mr Emmanuel Ainebyoona, the spokesperson of the Health ministry.
He said of the cumulative cases which stand at 34, the 16 are laboratory confirmed while 18 are probable. Similarly, of the 21 deaths, four are confirmed while 17 are probable.
“Cases reported outside Mubende include three in Kyegegwa and one in Kassanda but all linked to the index case in Mubende,” ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Ainebyoona said, adding that there were “no confirmed cases in [the capital] Kampala”.
Mubende is in the central region of Uganda and is about a two-hour drive from the capital of Kampala. It sits along a busy road leading to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), which has long been plagued by the virus.
There are gold mines in the area, which attract people from different parts of Uganda, as well as other countries.
The mobile nature of the population in Mubende increases the risk of the possible spread of the virus, warned the WHO.
Health authorities said samples from suspected cases were being analysed at the Uganda Virus Research Institute.
The ministry appealed to Ugandans to adhere to preventive measures and report any suspected cases to nearby health facilities or authorities.
At the weekend, officials expressed concern over the gaps in contact tracing.
While delivering his message at the national taskforce meeting at Mubende District headquarters on Saturday, Lt Col Henry Kyobe, the Ebola incident commander, said they were tracing 213 contacts.
“We have 213 cumulative contacts. Contact tracing is still a challenge. The biggest proportion, numbering 118 (55 percent), are health workers, meaning that community contacts have not all been listed which creates a challenge,” he said.
Health Minister Jane Ruth Aceng demanded a robust contact tracing.