Ebola outbreak spreads to Sierra Leone

Several people reported dead near border with Guinea, in country's first outbreak of deadly virus.

    Ebola outbreak spreads to Sierra Leone
    Ebola has killed more than 100 people since March, and has a fatality rate of up to 90 percent [AFP]

    Sierra Leone has confirmed its first death from Ebola, with several more suspected to have succumbed to the deadly virus that swept across neighbouring Guinea earlier this year.

    "I can categorically confirm that the Ebola sickness has materialised," said health ministry official Amara Jambai on Monday. 

    "Preliminary information received from the field indicates that one laboratory-confirmed case and five community deaths have been reported from Koindu chiefdom," the World Health Organisation said in a statement on its website.

    Jambai initially said four cases of Ebola fever had been identified, but later clarified that while four people had died, only one person had so far been confirmed to have had the virus, the AFP news agency reported. 

    "Of the four deaths only one has been confirmed as dying from Ebola after two independent tests at the Kenema Laboratory Centre. The cause of death of the other three is still being investigated," he said.

    More patients 

    Jambai said 11 people with acute diarrhoea and vomiting had been admitted to the Koindu community health centre in a region bordering southern Guinea.

    Four people had died and five were responding to treatment.

    Ebola has killed more than 100 people in neighbouring Guinea and Liberia since March, and has a fatality rate of up to 90 percent.

    It is one of a handful of similar fevers that cause vomiting, diarrhoea, muscle pain, and in severe cases, organ failure and unstoppable internal bleeding.

    It can be transmitted by blood and other bodily fluids, as well as the handling of contaminated corpses or infected animals, known to be vectors of the disease.

    The WHO has described the region's first Ebola outbreak as one of the most challenging outbreaks it has faced. 

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.