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Adjumani district officials and development partners during a taskforce meeting on Ebola

By Goodluck Musinguzi

Adjumani district health department is on heightened alert following the death of a patient in the neighbouring Amuru district who showed Ebola like symptoms.

The exact cause of the death is not yet confirmed but it comes at a time when the country is battling a deadly outbreak of Ebola of the Sudan variant.

The Adjumani district surveillance officer, Paul Olony, during a district Taskforce meeting on Friday informed the public that the solitary case that was suspected in Adjumani has tested negative of ebola.

“We are also monitoring another suspected case of a South Sudanese refugee from Morobi refugee settlement in Obongi district who has crossed to Nimule in South Sudan. I am in touch with the health workers from Nimule,” Olony stated.

He asked the ministry of health to avail the health workers with the requisite Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) which he said is their major challenge.

Olonyi disclosed that for case management there are only 10 body bags in Adjumani and that the surveillance team from the village to the hospital need to be reoriented in order to be able to detect the cases.

Dr Bosco Muhindo, a public health officer with UNHCR in Adjumani, agreed that there is a need to always protect health workers because health workers and the family members of persons infected by Ebola constitute the most-at-risk population.

“Most of the death cases from Ebola (74%) are members of the same family and this can only be avoided by wearing protective equipment all the time,” Muhindo said.

The deputy resident district commissioner for Adjumani, Swadick Angupale, who was the chairperson of the meeting appealed to the health workers to be 24 hours on alert as the district has porous borders with South Sudan.

“We are more at risk being at the border with South Sudan, we have a high chance given the porous borders, we must, therefore, be vigilant,” Angupale remarked.

The assistant district health officer Adjumani, Henry Lulu, said the health department is working with implementing partners to ensure the deadly disease does not affect the frontline health workers.

“One of the reasons we are working together with other partners is to ensure we can secure some of the basic personal protective equipment and train the health workers,” Lulu indicated.

Currently, four districts have confirmed Ebola cases-Mubende, Kyegegwa, Kagadi and Kassanda district.

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