By Godfrey Olukya 15-9-2012
The government of Uganda has informed it’s citizens and the international community that the deadly Ebola disease is no longer a threat in the country.
The ministry health has released a statement indicating that the disease which killed over 20 people three months ago has been eliminated.
The statement said,’We inform the general public that the threat of any emerging outbreak of Ebola is almost negligible. The country is currently in a post Ebola Surveillance Phase which continuously monitors the situation to ensure that the Ebola transmission cycle has been broken and that there is no likelihood of occurrence of any new cases.’
The ministry’s permanent secretary, William Lwamafa said that the Post Ebola Surveillance countdown period is a prerequisite of the World Health Organization (WHO) criteria which requires any affected country to monitor the Ebola situation for a period of 42 days after the last discharged patient case before finally declaring that the outbreak is over.
The last patient in western Uganda Kibaale district was allowed to go home on 24th August. This therefore means that Uganda will finally be declared Ebola free on October 4th. The Ministry h however informed the general public that while the period of active infection is over, the country continues to monitor the situation to ensure that there is no risk of yet another outbreak.
The ministry statement said that the structures previously set up to contain the outbreak are still operational to combat any potential risks. The trained health workers are still actively watching the situation, the laboratory system at the Uganda Virus Research institute is still operational while the national and district task forces are all on the alert to watch out for any emerging threats.