Uganda’s health ministry says a patient has tested positive for Ebola in what is the first cross-border case of the deadly virus since an outbreak started in neighbouring DR Congo last year.
The ministry said the patient is a Congolese woman in a district near the DRC border.
@MinofHealthUG and the @WHO have confirmed a case of #Ebola Virus Disease outbreak in #Uganda. Although there have been numerous previous alerts, this is the first confirmed case in Uganda during the Ebola outbreak on-going in neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo. pic.twitter.com/aKq75YfI0I
— WHO Uganda (@WHOUganda) June 11, 2019
Confirmation of cross-border contamination is a blow to local health officials who have been monitoring the border and isolating probable Ebola patients.
There have been more than 2,000 confirmed and probable cases of the Ebola virus in DR Congo since August, with nearly 1,400 deaths.
In April, an expert committee of the WHO decided that DR Congo’s outbreak, while of “deep concern,” was not yet a global health emergency.
International spread of a disease as contagious as Ebola is one of the major criteria WHO considers before declaring a situation to be a global health emergency.
Uganda has had multiple outbreaks of Ebola since 2000.