Ebola outbreak crosses borders – Was brought to Uganda by 5-year-old Congolese boy

Ebola, which was spreading rapidly but is now contained within the Democratic Republic of Congo, has now spread to Uganda.

A 5-year-old Congolese boy who traveled to Uganda died from the disease on Wednesday. The boy’s younger brother and grandmother have also tested positive for Ebola.

Ebola outbreak spreads from Congo to Uganda. Map via The Sun

The DRC has been suffering from the second-largest and second-deadliest Ebola outbreak in history since it began in August. More than 1,300 have died.

Uganda had been preparing itself for this moment: About 4,700 health workers have been vaccinated in 165 health facilities, and Ebola treatment centers have already been set up.

The epidemic still remains dangerous, however, as preventive measures have proved ineffective. Rwanda, which borders both Uganda and the DRC, has announced it will tighten border surveillance.

There’s now more pressure on the World Health Organization to declare the outbreak a global health emergency — something it had avoided doing until now because the disease had not yet spread to other countries.

An expert committee will meet on Friday to discuss whether to make the emergency declaration for this epidemic, which shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

[BBC, NPR, CNN, VOX, The New Times, New York Times, Al Jazeera]

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