The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Ministry of Health (MOH) in Uganda have confirmed three cases of Ebola in the country, all from the same family. The first victim, a 5-year old boy, sadly died on June 11. A second victim, the boy’s grandmother, died on June 12. The two had travelled to the Democratic Republic of Congo with their family and re-entered Uganda through the Bwera border post in Kasese district. Five relatives of the deceased, one of whom has Ebola, agreed to be repatriated to the DRC. Three suspected cases, not related to the index case, remain in isolation at a hospital near the border. The MOH, WHO, and U.S. Centers for Disease Control have dispatched Rapid Response Teams to the district to bolster the efforts of the teams on the ground and the local and national task forces.
Given the ongoing outbreak in the DRC, Uganda had proactively mapped out several scenarios for Ebola arriving in the country, including via border crossing. In caution and preparation for the possible spread to Uganda, over 4,700 health workers have been vaccinated, Ebola Treatment Units established, protective gear stockpiled, and training drills conducted. Additional vaccines have been delivered from DRC and the MOH intensified community education and disease monitoring.
Our partners, staff, and Seed Educators are safe and continuing their work in-country. We are monitoring the situation closely and following the guidance issued by the MOH in Uganda. We stand in solidarity with the people of Uganda and are optimistic that this will be contained rapidly. We also continue to call on the international community to offer more resources and support to the DRC to combat the growing outbreak that is putting thousands at risk and to prevent any more loss of life.
*Featured image photo credit: WHO Uganda.