The Deputy Minister of Health Dr Yatta Loli Lugor speaking to the press in Juba. [Gurtong | Waakhe Simon Wudu]
By Waakhe Simon Wudu
JUBA – 11 August 2012 [Gurtong]- The government is calling for collective efforts with the members of the public to help prevent the deadly disease.
The Deputy Minister of Health Dr Yatta Loli Lugor says that the government has sent a delegation to Uganda to monitor how authorities there are managing the disease.
“The government of South Sudan is well prepared. We have put all the necessary measures in place to protect the people of South Sudan from Ebola,” Yatta said.
He cautioned people to distance them selves away from monkeys and chimpanzees as they are believed to be the carriers of the disease.
In Uganda, 14 people have died and 36 cases registered since the disease broke out in July.
He advised the public not to panic but get informed about how the spread of the disease can be faster and dangerous.
Ebola is a highly infectious disease, which presents with high grade of fever and bleeding tendencies. It is very infectious, kills in a short time but can easily be prevented.
The signs and symptoms of the disease according the Ministry includes; fever, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, headache, measles-like rash, red eyes, and sometimes with bleeding from body openings.
It can be spread through direct body contact with body fluids like saliva, blood stool, vomit, urine, vaginal secretions and sweat from an infected person and soiled linen used by a patient.
Ebola outbreak in South Sudan was first experienced in 1976 in Meridi town of Western Equatoria State where it killed two people.
The last outbreak in South Sudan occurred in Yambio in 2004 killing one person.
The public has been called to report and immediately take any suspected patient to a nearby health unit and the county health authorities and disinfect the beddings and clothing of an infected person.
Persons who are suspected to have died of Ebola must be handled with strong protective wear and buried immediately.
Citizens are advised to avoid feasting at funerals and burials of suspicious community deaths should be done under close supervision of health workers.