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Guinea reports 7 Ebola cases, including three deaths in new outbreak

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CONAKRY, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) — Guinean health minister confirmed Sunday seven Ebola cases, including three deaths in a new outbreak of Ebola, in the N’Zerekore administrative region in southeastern Guinea.

All of the seven reported cases, four men and three women, have been isolated.

The Guinean Minister of Health Remy Lamah confirmed at the end of an emergency meeting with the presence of several officials of the National Health Security Agency (ANSS), the representative of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Guinea and other foreign technical partners.

Giving the history of the recent appearance of the disease in Guinea, General Director of the ANSS, Sakoba Keita, recalled that it was started by a nurse from N’Zerekore, who fell ill with symptoms of Ebola and died on February 1. A few days after the burial of the patient in Gbeke, some parents started to show symptoms of diarrhea, vomiting and high fever.

Thus, samples taken from the patients were firstly analyzed at the local diagnostic center, which confirmed cases of Ebola hemorrhagic fever. After double confirmation of medical analyses in Conakry, “we can say that this reality puts Guinea in a situation of an Ebola epidemic”, said Keita.

In the coming hours, the Guinean government will make an official declaration of an Ebola epidemic, and the N’Zerekore treatment centers will be reactivated in order to receive any confirmed cases.

Two expert missions will be deployed to N’Zerekore, one of which is to delimit the incriminated areas, while isolating the contacts of patients to investigate the origin of the disease, which would either come from a cured patient or an animal.

Keita asked the public not to panic and adopt preventive measures, including handwashing, avoiding contact with suspected patients and report any similar case to specialized health institutions.

The WHO representative in Guinea, Georges Alfred Ki-Zerbo, on behalf of Guinea’s technical and financial partners, affirmed that WHO will bring necessary supports to Guinea, which already has extensive experience in the fight against Ebola.

“The WHO is alerted at all levels and in conjunction with the vaccine manufacturers, all arrangements will be made to ensure that the vaccine is shipped to Conakry on time,” said Ki-Zerbo. Enditem