New Ebola outbreak declared in Guinea

Feb. 16, 2021

Health authorities in Guinea declared an outbreak of Ebola in the rural community of Gouéké in N’Zerekore prefecture after three Ebola cases were confirmed by the national laboratory, marking the first time the disease has been reported in the country since an outbreak ended in 2016, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Initial investigations found that a nurse from the local health facility died on January 28, 2021. Following her burial, six people who attended the funeral reported Ebola-like symptoms and two of them have died, while the other four have been hospitalized, the WHO said.

Last week, an outbreak of Ebola was detected in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The WHO also said that Guinea was one of the three most-affected countries in the 2014–2016 West Africa Ebola outbreak, which was the largest since the virus was first discovered in 1976.

WHO the staff is on the ground in Guinea. In addition to surveillance, staff members will help with ramping up infection prevention and control of health facilities and other key locations and reaching out to communities to ensure they take a key role in the response.

Samples of the confirmed cases have been sent to the InstitutPasteur in Senegal for a full genome sequencing to identify the strain of the Ebola virus.

With the epicenter of the current outbreak in a border area, the WHO said it is already working with health authorities in Liberia and Sierra Leone to beef up community surveillance of cases in their border districts as well as strengthening their capacity to test for cases and conduct surveillance in health facilities. The WHO said it is also reaching out to Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Senegal, and other countries at risk in the sub-region.

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