By Haruna Gimba
An Ebola outbreak in Uganda that has infected 65 people and killed 27 is coming under control and should be over by the end of the year, the country’s information ministry said on Friday.
Africa’s top public health body said on Thursday there was a risk the outbreak, which was declared a month ago, could spread but that it was manageable.
The government has introduced a three-week lockdown around the epicentre of the outbreak of the Sudan variant of the Ebola virus in central Uganda. The measures include an overnight curfew, restrictions on movement and the closure of places of worship and entertainment.
On October 20 the health ministry registered just one new case of Ebola, state communication minister Godfrey Kabbyanga said in a statement.
“The latest status update from the Ministry of Health indicates that the epidemic is, indeed, coming under control,” Kabbyanga added.
“The government is, therefore, optimistic that with co-operation from the public, this epidemic should be rolled back, and wiped out by close of 2022,” he said.
There are currently no proven vaccines or treatments for the Sudan variant of Ebola, one of four known Ebola viruses to cause haemorrhagic fever in humans.
The US sent Gilead Sciences’ remdesivir and Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc’s experimental Ebola antibody drug MBP134 to Uganda last week to help safeguard healthcare workers.