Malawi government speaks on Ebola scare

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Malawi’s government has dismissed fears of a possible Ebola outbreak in the country after a suspected case was reported in the northern district of Karonga, which borders Tanzania.

The patient, reported to be 37 years old, was admitted last week at a health facility after exhibiting symptoms associated with the disease – prompting fears of an outbreak.

Health Secretary Dan Namarika dismissed the fears in a statement released Monday night.

“There’s no history suggesting contact or travel to any region with Ebola,” Mr Namarika said.

“The patient is being managed with broad spectrum antibiotics, fluids and general supporting care.”

Fears of a possible outbreak are heightened by the area’s proximity to neighbouring Tanzania, where the government has denied withholding information from the World Health Organization WHO on suspected cases of Ebola.

The Tanzanian government admitted earlier this month that it investigated some 28 suspected cases of Ebola over the past year, including two in September, but says they all tested negative.

A current outbreak in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo has killed more than 2,000 people.

Mr Namarika assured Malawians that “the government will… be vigilant in ensuring that disease surveillance and response continues”.

The statement by Malawi’s health minister follows a social media storm over fears that the country was at risk.

 

Dominica Nwabufo