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GHS confirms 2 cases of Marburg virus disease identified in Ashanti Region

The Ghana Health Service has confirmed the presence of two cases of Marburg virus disease in Ghana.

The Ghana Health Service has confirmed the presence of two cases of Marburg virus disease in Ghana.

The cases were first identified in the Ashanti Region on July 7, 2022.

A statement signed by the Director-General of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye said the cases were confirmed after testing at the Institute Pasteur in Dakar (IPD), Senegal.

“The test results corroborated the results from Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research. The samples were sent to IPD with the support of the World Health Organization (WHO) for validation in line with standard practice, this being the first time Ghana has confirmed Marburg Virus Disease.”

GHS said it has so far traced some 98 contacts, including those from Sawla-Tuna-Kalba district in the Savannah Region.

“The persons are currently under quarantine and being monitored by the Ashanti and Savannah Regional Health Directorates of the Ghana Health Service.”

It further noted that no new cases of MVD have been identified.

The Health Service says it is continuing with response measures to prevent any further cases, while working with all relevant bodies to ensure that no case is missed by the health sector.

“Community activities are being strengthened with the engagement of community-based surveillance volunteers who serve as eyes on the ground for the health system and who will report any unusual occurrences to the Ghana Health Service for further action.”

“The necessary additional logistics including Personal Protection Equipment have been sent to the affected districts should the need arise. The Ghana Health Service together with partners remains committed to protecting the health of the population and seeks the cooperation of all to ensure that this outbreak is contained effectively,” it added.

Marburg Virus Disease is a rare but severe haemorrhagic fever that affects both humans and non-human primates.

It is caused by the Marburg virus. It is transmitted by infected persons or animals from direct contact with body fluids, blood, and other discharges from the affected person/animal. The incubation period for the disease is two (2) to twenty-one (21) days. Treatment is symptomatic. There is currently no vaccine available.

Prospective cases may present with fever, bloody diarrhoea, bleeding from gums, bleeding into the skin, bleeding into eyes, and, bloody urine.

In 2021, the Ghana Health Service (GHS) directed all its regional offices to be on high alert for the Marburg virus after an outbreak of the disease was recorded in neighboring West African country, Guinea.

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