Health

WHO Director General Visits Uganda to Assess Ebola Response

The Ministry of Health has received the World Health Organization Director General, Dr Tedros Adhnom Ghebreyesus, who jetted in to assess Uganda’s response to the current Ebola outbreak in Kasese District, Western Uganda.

Tedros made the stopover in Uganda while on his way from Democratic Republic of Congo where he visited the Ebola hotspots, Butembo and Katwa.

This is his third visit to Uganda since the Ebola outbreak was declared in Augist 2018 in DRC.

Tadros pledged to continue supporting Uganda to contain the out break by mobilizing global and regional support.

“I pledge to continue supporting Uganda to control this outbreak because its not clean until the outbreak in DRC is finished. There appears to be a decline in Butembo and Katwa areas However, in my discussion with my colleagues we agreed to be very careful with optimism but very cautious optimism because the Ebola situation in DRC has been very unpredictable with up and down trends”.

He further revealed that Mabalako where Ebola outbreak was first confirmed in August 2018 has once again become a hot bed of new infections.

“I have accepted the assessment of the WHO Emergency committee that although the Ebola outbreak in DRC is an emergency in the country and the region, it does not currently constitute a public health emergency of international concern”.

He added that in 2018 they asked MERCK to produce more doses of Ebola RVSV vaccines.

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Hon Dr Jane Ruth Aceng the Minister of Health that the transition from a preparedness mode to a response mode was not difficult given that ministry of health and partners had invested heavily in ten months of preparations to handle any eventualities.

“The challenge is that we now have to again mobilize resources for response phase” she said.

She appreciated WHO for the support and said Uganda vaccinated 4,200 frontline health workers and other workers.

“During this response phase, we have received a total of 3400 doses of vaccine. A donation of 400 doses from the DRC as a quick initial measure to kick start vaccination of contacts, frontline health workers, other workers who were not vaccinated and an additional 3000 doses sent in by WHO. They all arrived very timely and vaccinations commenced last Saturday 15th June 2019 where over 20 contacts were vaccinated and to day we expect to vaccinate over 70 people and the process will continue.”

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