New York, USA, March 24, 2023/African Media Agency(AMA)/Equatorial Guinea has confirmed eight new cases of Marburg, bringing to nine the number of confirmed cases since the viral hemorrhagic fever outbreak was declared on February 13 in this Central African country.
According to the World Health Organization (OMS), the new cases were confirmed following laboratory analysis of additional samples. The new cases were reported in the provinces of Kie Ntem in the east, Littoral in the west of the country, and Centro Sur, all of which have international borders with Cameroon and Gabon.
Areas where cases have been reported are approximately 150 kilometers apart, suggesting wider transmission of the virus. To date, there are 20 probable cases and 20 deaths.
“Confirmation of these new cases is an essential signal to intensify response efforts to quickly stop the chain of transmission and avoid a large-scale outbreak and loss of life,” the agency said in a statement. Dr Matshidiso Moeti, World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Africa. “Marburg disease is highly virulent, but it can be effectively controlled and stopped by rapidly deploying a wide range of outbreak response measures.”
Additional WHO experts deployed in coming days
WHO is working with national authorities to strengthen emergency response measures by improving disease surveillance, testing, clinical care, infection prevention and control, as well as conducting additional epidemiological investigations and raising public awareness to help curb the spread of infection.
Additional WHO experts in epidemiology, logistics, health operations and infection prevention and control will be deployed in the coming days. The UN agency is also helping the health authorities of neighboring countries, Cameroon and Gabon, to strengthen preparedness and response to the epidemic.
Note that there are no approved vaccines or antiviral treatments to treat the virus. However, supportive care – oral or intravenous rehydration – and treatment of specific symptoms improve the chances of survival.
Marburg disease is transmitted to humans by fruit bats and is spread among humans through direct contact with bodily fluids of infected people, contaminated surfaces and objects. The disease is very virulent and causes hemorrhagic fever with a mortality rate of up to 88%. The virus belongs to the same family as that responsible for the virus disease Ebola.
Distributed by African Media Agency for UN Info
Source : African Media Agency (AMA)