Ebola: The monster to Ugandans

By Laura Cenge

On September 20, 2022, an Ebola outbreak caused by the Sudan virus was declared, following laboratory confirmation of a patient from a village in Madudu sub-country in Mubende district. Since some deaths have been reported in the district, Ugandans have been fearful of a lockdown.

However, the President has urged the general public to remain calm because the disease is manageable and medical experts are working to find a cure, despite the fact that the previous strain had a vaccine that could contain it.The disease is being compared to COVID-19 and some of the measures to contain it run along with those of Ebola.

The obvious ones are hand washing, which helps to reduce the risk of disease transmission, and the use of hand sanitizers as needed. 

Dr. Mulindwa, the Director of Alan Galpin at Uganda Christian University, stated that hand washing reduces the risk of contracting a number of these communicable diseases.

“Washing hands reduces the risk of contracting a number of these communicable diseases by 80%,” he said in an interview.

He also stated that the university’s medical team is prepared and ready to treat patients who come in for medical treatment. Furthermore, students are encouraged to report any ebola-related symptoms so that they can be treated as soon as possible.

Furthermore, he advises that as a community, we should avoid shaking hands because you never know where one is coming from. This will aid in controlling the points of contact and spreading the virus.

He said, “Much as both COVID-19 and Ebola are viruses, they are spread in different ways.”

The washing tanks located throughout the university will be reopened. This is to promote hand washing as the primary method of preventing disease spread.

“It is better to prevent these conditions than treat them,” Mulindwa said.

What you need to know about Ebola.

According to the International Classification of Diseases for filoviruses (ICD-11) released in May 2019, Ebola disease is now sub-categorized depending on the causative virus. Outbreaks of Ebola disease caused by Sudan viruses are named Sudan Virus Disease (SVD) outbreaks. Prior to May 2019, all viruses causing Ebola disease were grouped together. Based on the results of laboratory tests, this outbreak is caused by the Sudan virus.

The Ebola virus is highly contagious and is transmitted to humans by wild animals before spreading to the general population via human-to-human transmission. It spreads when people come into contact with infected people through body fluids such as saliva, vomit, urine, sweat, and blood.

Caretakers of patients who have been in close contact with the victim and are within a metre of someone infected are at a higher risk of contracting the virus.

The signs and symptoms of the virus include fever,fatigue,chest pain, diarrhea,vomiting,internal and external bleeding, and yellowing of the eyes in a later stage.

Preventive measures for the spread of the virus

-Wash hands regularly

-Ensure to clean latrine/toilets and door handles regularly.

-Regularly wash your utensils and clothes.