Monday, October 29, 2012

#Marburg - Ibanda: 2 Deaths Confirmed; 1 Suspected, 18 Health Workers Under Quarantine

October 29, 2012

A 45-year-old man died of Marburg virus at Ibanda Hospital on Sunday, Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital Executive Director Dr George Upenytho told this paper.
“I have been with Medicins San Frontiers doctors from Kabale. They have told me that another person has died of Marburg at Ibanda Hospital, it is a confirmed case,” Dr Upenytho told this newspaper on Sunday evening.
The deceased was identified as Vincent Mushabe from Ndoragi II village in Nyabuhikye Sub County, Ibanda District. He reported at the hospital at 4pm on Saturday from Ibanda Health Clinic where he had been initially treated.
Medical workers also say there is one suspected Marburg virus case at Ibanda Hospital, a 19 year old woman from Kagango, Bisheshe Sub County. 
Meanwhile, a 32-year-old woman referred to Mbarara Regional Referral from Ibanda on Tuesday, dying the same night, has been confirmed to have died of Marburg disease.
Blood samples sent to Kampala tested positive for Marburg disease on Saturday. However, Dr Upenytho says, her body was handled by a number of people before she was buried.
“The husband asked for the body and they took it for burial. At home they changed it from a bag into coffin,” Dr Upenytho said.
Dr Upenytho says a team of doctors from the Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation is in Ibanda to monitor the family members of the deceased and medical staff at Ibanda hospital who handled her before she was referred to Mbarara.
18 health workers handled the deceased at Mbarara hospital and they have been placed under quarantine, Dr Upenytho says. These include intern doctors and cleaners.
The Sunday death brings the official number of those who have died of Marburg disease to eight since the disease was confirmed on October 19 in Kabale District.
However, medical officers say the number could be higher since there are people who have died of Marburg-related complications in Kabale District but are yet to be tested to confirm if they died of Marburg.
Testing now done in Kabale
Meanwhile, testing of specimens from suspected Marburg victims is now being done from the isolation centre at Rushoroza Health Center III, Kabale District. Patrick Tusiime, the Kabale District Health Officer, confirmed the development on Sunday, adding that donors from the United States Center for Disease Control are funding the activity.
“A field laboratory for testing samples from suspected Marburg virus victims has started operating in Kabale, and international donors from the Center for Disease Control are funding the activity. This will save time and logistics that we have been spending to transport the samples from the Uganda Virus Research Institute in Entebbe,” Dr Tusiime said.
Eight patients are currently admitted at the isolation centre.

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