Medicine

Death of Ebola Patients who Fled DRC Hospital Highlights Dangers

Death of Ebola Patients who Fled DRC Hospital Highlights Dangers

'Medical preparedness and a swift worldwide response to the Ebola outbreak in DR Congo are essential if we are to prevent a new Ebola epidemic, ' said Minister of Foreign Affairs Ine Eriksen Søreide.

Health officials say they face a huge significant mistrust especially as many place more faith in clerics in white collars rather than doctors in white coats.

It would be impractical and counter-productive to ask security guards, who are not equipped with protective gear, to forcibly restrain patients, said Nahid Bhadelia, medical director of the special pathogens unit at Boston University Medical Centre, who worked in an Ebola treatment unit in Sierra Leone during its 2014-2016 outbreak.

"Right now, we're thinking the risk of importation of Ebola to the United States is very low", Skinner said.

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Since the first outbreak was recorded early this month, there have been growing fears with more than twice as many Ebola outbreaks in the DRC as any other country since the virus was discovered in 1976. The other patient was taken home, where he died hours later, leaving health officials scrambling to locate their contacts across the city of 1.5 million people. After an incubation period that lasts between 2 to 21 days, the infected person may present symptoms such as high fever, headaches, muscular pain, vomiting, diarrhea, and in some cases internal and external hemorrhages. Saturday, a helicopter with Congo's health minister on board, flew to Iboko and Bikoro to administer a new experimental vaccine to the health works being deployed to investigate those in contact with the confirmed dead.

It is vital that medical care remains available to the entire population needing medical treatment not related to the Ebola virus disease (malaria, chronic illnesses, obstetric care, etc).

"The plan consists of surveillance, case investigation, contact tracing, case management, safe burials, community engagement, and social mobilization", the statement said. "The quicker patients are admitted, the greater their chance of survival and. of limiting the spread of Ebola". There have been 27 deaths so far, with three deaths confirmed as Ebola.

UNICEF and the World's Health Organization (WHO) has already sent their representatives in the region to help and monitor, at the same time, the deployment of the vaccination campaign. Meanwhile, millions of dollars from the Congolese government and worldwide aid have been allocated to combat the spread of the deadly disease, including up to $8 million from the U.S. Agency for global Development. The virus can be fatal in up to 90 percent of cases, depending on the strain.


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