With this, Mali has become the sixth West African country to be affected in the world's most deadliest outbreak of Ebola
Mali’s Ministry of Health has confirmed the country’s first case of Ebola virus disease. The two-year-old girl whose samples had tested positive at the country’s SEREFO laboratory was declared dead on Friday. With this, Mali has now become the sixth West African country to be affected in the world's most deadliest outbreak of Ebola. Senegal and Nigeria, two other countries in the region, have recently been declared virus-free by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The girl, who recently arrived from Guinea, another affected country in West Africa, was accompanied by her grandmother. She was tested on October 20 at Quartier Plateau in Kayes, a city in western Mali, about 600 kilometres from the capital city of Bamako. The child had fever, cough, bleeding from the nose, and blood in the stools and was admitted at Fousseyni Daou Hospital. Testing confirmed Ebola virus as the causative agent on 23 October.
The girl travelled with her grandmother from her home in Mali to attend a funeral in the town of Kissidougou, in southern Guinea. On 19 October, they left the country to return to Mali and at that time, the child was already showing symptoms such as bleeding from the nose. As they travelled by public transport through Keweni, Kankan, Sigouri, and Kouremale to Bamako and then to Kayes, many people are likely to be exposed.
WHO and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) were already in Mali assisting with the country’s preparedness measures. WHO staff is now assisting in a surge response to the outbreak. The 43 people who have been identified as having come in close and unprotected contact with the child are being monitored in isolation.
The outbreak on record has killed 4,900 people, mainly in nearby Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. Nearly 10,000 people have been affected by the disease.
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