The Guinean government has risen to 59 the number of people dead from the Ebola epidemic running rampant in the country.
“Clearly it is Ebola fever, concluded a Laboratory of Lyon, France, which has confirmed the information”.
Six of the twelve samples tested in France have shown positive results for Ebola, said the director of the Division of Prevention of Epidemcs at the Guinean Ministry of Health, Dr. Sakoba Keita. Keita explained that there have been 80 suspected cases of which 59 have been confirmed as victims of the Ebola fever.
“It needs to be understood that all cases are necessarily Ebola. Some may have another origin and may result from severe cases of dysentery,” stated Keita.
The NGO Doctors Without Borders announced Saturday a reinforcement of medical and logistics teams deployed in Guinea to address the epidemic.
Specifically, it will send 33 tons of medicines and medical equipment, including isolation units.
“These structures are essential to prevent the spread of the disease, which is highly contagious,” said Esther Sterk, who is responsible for supporting medical actions at MSF. “There are specialist staff providing care to patients with symptoms,” she added.
Ebola has a mortality rate of up to 90 percent of infected people and so far it has been detected in three locations in the Southeast of Guinea and in the capital, Conakry. There hadn’t been any documented cases of Ebola in Guinea until now.
The World Health Organization (WHO ) has highlighted that the cases of Ebola have been detected in the border region with Sierra Leone, with people in the neighboring country showing the same symptoms as in Guinea: hyperthermia, diarrhea, vomiting and bleeding. On Saturday the authorities in Sierra Leone have reported that they are already conducting tests to determine whether these cases are the same epidemic than that of Guinea.
The Director of Health of the Government of Sierra Leone, Brima Kargbo, said they are investigating the case of a 14 year old who died in the town of Buedu, near the border with Guinea. The teenager traveled to Guinea to attend the funeral of one of the casualties of the epidemic.
Ebola is highly contagious and is transmitted between humans through contact with organs, blood, secretions or other bodily fluids. Until now it had been detected in countries such as Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, South Sudan and Gabon.
The disease mainly affects chimpanzees, gorillas, bats, monkeys, antelopes and porcupines, but it can be transmitted to humans who come into contact with infected animals.