By: Vincent Gunde
The Ministry of Health and Population in Malawi with support from its partners, Department For International Development ( DFID) through UNICEF, has developed a preparedness and response plan on Ebola virus disease outbreak for Malawi.
Dowa District Health Promotion Officer ( DHPO) Davie Nuka.health workers have been trained in infection prevention and case management.
The Ministry has started orienting health workers in districts and setting up isolation centres ready for screening for new arrivals.
Presenting the overview statement on Ebola virus disease outbreak for Malawi at a meeting with the District executive council committee in Dowa, District Health Promotion Officer ( DHPO), Davie Nuka, said so far Malawi has trained 71 health workers on capacity building in infection prevention and case management as well as briefing 55 influential leaders on the deadly disease- Ebola which is likely to hit the country as it continue receiving new arrivals from countries hit by Ebola virus disease.
Nuka said as of September, 2019, a total of 3,145 Ebola virus disease cases were reported including 3,034 confirmed and 111 probable cases of which 2,103 cases died.
He said of the total confirmed and probable cases, 1,760 were females and 898 were children aged less than 18 years and 5% were health workers.
The officer said outside Democratic Republic of Congo( DRC), a case of Ebola virus disease was confirmed by Uganda on 11th June, 2019 on a- 5 year old child who travelled from DRC into Uganda for treatment but on a sad note, the child and two of his relative, have since died.
He said no other cases have been reported by Uganda or any other country but all countries in Africa including Malawi are alert saying Ebola is a severe viral disease with case fatality rate of up to 90%.
Ebola, first appeared in 1976 in two simultaneous outbreaks, Nzara in Sudan and Yambuku in DRC.
The outbreaks are frequent in DRC, Sudan and Uganda,
In DRC, the outbreak was in a village near the Ebola river from which the disease takes its name.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health and Population in Malawi has confirmed a case of a suspected Ebola patient admitted to Karonga treatment camp with fever and signs of infection.
In its press statement released on 14th October, 2019, the Secretary for Health, Dr. Dan Namarika, said the health care workers at the camp have ensured infection prevention processes while other investigations are underway, in coordination with partners.
Dr. Namarika is assuring the general public that so far Malawi has no case of Ebola and the government will continue being vigilant in ensuring that the disease surveillance and response continues.