Al-hadji Kudra Maliro / AP
The World Health Organization is considering declaring the current Ebola outbreak in Central Africa a global health crisis after new cases have spread from the neighboring Democratic Republic of the Congo to Uganda, killing nearly 1,400 people in the disease.
WHO announced on Tuesday that a 5-year-old boy who traveled from Congo to Uganda with his family died of the disease. A Ugandan Ministry of Health employee said Thursday that a second patient, the boy's grandmother, also died.
Ugandan Health Minister Jane Ruth Aceng said officials are on alert to prevent the spread of the disease.
I'm worried because you do not take Ebola in the countryside lightly because Ebola means death, "she told the BBC.
" Uganda has been preparing for this in the last ten months and you have seen the speed "We moved to detect these cases, isolate them and prepare an answer," said Aceng.
The Associated Press, citing the Congolese Ministry of Health, said that a dozen family members of the boy also have Ebola symptoms Six of them, however, managed to get them to a treatment facility.
A WHO expert committee on the outbreak was due to meet for a third time in Geneva on Friday to discuss whether a global health emergency would be reported
The latest Ebola outbreak in northeastern Congo was reported in August, according to Doctors Without Borders, "by far the largest "of ten such outbreaks in the last 40 years in the country.
Rwanda, bordering both the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda, says it is exacerbating its borders with both countries, and the government is demanding people, according to the state-supported newspaper The New Times .
Earlier this year, Rwanda announced it would equip the first healthcare professionals with an experimental Ebola vaccine to prevent the disease from entering its territory. And the Ugandan Ministry of Health has encouraged the public to get the vaccine to ensure the safety and efficacy of the vaccines, Aceng said in a statement.
Ebola is spread through direct contact with body fluids such as blood, saliva and vomit. First symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches and chills. Later symptoms can be internal bleeding, vomiting and hemoptysis. On average, half of the people suffering from Ebola die as a result of the disease.