The World Health Organisation (WHO) has disclosed that it will be holding an emergency meeting on the outbreak of the Marburg virus in Equatorial Guinea.
Africa Today News, New York reports that no fewer than nine people have died from the haemorrhagic fever, and there are a further 16 suspected cases in the eastern Kie Ntem province, where the disease has never previously been recorded.
The deaths have been preliminarily linked to a funeral ceremony, with four of the victims – members of the same family.
The virus is believed to be transmitted to people from fruit bats and, like ebola, spreads between humans through the transmission of bodily fluids.
As of Monday, 9 people have succumbed to the virus and there are 16 other suspected cases. The virus which is considered to be a cousin of the Ebola virus, is highly virulent and causes hemorrhagic fever, along with many other symptoms, including fever, fatigue, and blood-stained vomit, and diarrhea.
‘Marburg is highly infectious. Thanks to the rapid and decisive action by the Equatorial Guinean authorities in confirming the disease, emergency response can get to full steam quickly so that we save lives and halt the virus as soon as possible,’ said Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, Regional Director for Africa.
The WHO statement also stated, that the advance teams have been deployed in the affected districts to trace those who came in contact with the affected persons, isolate and provide medical care to those showing symptoms of the disease.
The overseeing authorities have also facilitated the shipment of laboratory glove tents for sample testing as well as one viral hemorrhagic fever kit, which includes personal protective equipment which can be used by at least 500 health workers.