First Instances Of Lethal Marburg Virus Cases Confirmed In Ghana

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  • Health officials in the West African nation say 98 people are now under quarantine as suspected contact cases.
  • Teams are also going into communities to make them aware of the symptoms and to ensure they alert health authorities if any suspected cases emerge.
  • The virus is transmitted to people from fruit bats and spreads between humans through the transmission of bodily fluids.

The deadly Marburg virus, a highly contagious illness in the same family as the virus that causes Ebola, has been confirmed in Ghana’s first two cases as reported by BBC.

Quick action

In a hospital in the southern Ashanti region, it is reported that both patients have passed away.

Their samples tested positive earlier this month, and a Senegalese laboratory has since confirmed this.

According to health officials in the country of West Africa, 98 individuals are currently in isolation due to suspected contact cases.

These people include friends and family, medical professionals, and mortuary staff who interacted with the two patients.

It has now been determined that Marburg exists in West Africa twice. Guinea had one confirmed case last year, but the outbreak was deemed to be finished five weeks after the patient was found in September.

Ghana’s health authorities are receiving support from the World Health Organization (WHO), which has applauded the nation for its quick action.

Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO’s Africa head, stated, “This is good since Marburg may rapidly get out of hand if immediate and urgent action is not taken.”

Dr. Patrick Kumah-Aboagye, the director of Ghana’s health system, told BBC Focus on Africa radio that there was a large multidisciplinary team working to find the true cause of this.

Control procedures 

To stop more deaths, stringent infection control procedures and contact tracing have been implemented.

Teams are also visiting neighbourhoods to educate residents about the symptoms and encourage them to notify the appropriate authorities if any suspected instances are discovered.

Although there is currently no cure for Marburg, doctors advise addressing certain symptoms and drinking lots of fluids to increase a patient’s chance of survival.

The virus enters humans through fruit bats and spreads between people through the exchange of body fluids.

Families and hospital workers who are caring for a sick person are most at risk of contracting the infection.

It is a serious illness that frequently results in death and has symptoms like headache, fever, muscle cramps, vomiting blood, and bleeding.

Cautioning citizens 

Ghanaian authorities are cautioning citizens to stay away from caves and to prepare all animal products to their preferred temperature before consuming them.

The WHO reports that in addition to West Africa, isolated cases and past outbreaks have also been reported in Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, South Africa, and Uganda.

According to the international health organisation, Angola saw the bloodiest outbreak on record in 2005 when the virus claimed more than 200 lives.

Seven individuals perished in the first Marburg outbreak, which occurred in Germany in 1967.

 

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Source: BBC

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