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Ebola scare hits Kumasi: One suspected victim dies at KATH

BY: Kwadwo Baffoe Donkor & Doreen Andoh / Daily Graphic / Ghana

The Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) in Kumasi has recorded what could be the first case of Ebola virus in the country.

A 12-year-old girl referred to the facility from Ejisu exhibited signs of severe fever and bleeding, both of which are symptoms of the dreaded Ebola virus currently causing havoc in the West African sub-region, especially Sierra Leone, Guinea and Mali.

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The girl died last Saturday. Her blood sample has been sent to the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research in Accra for further laboratory investigations.

Dr Alexis Nong-Deifuba, the Ashanti Regional Director of Health Services, confirmed this to the Daily Graphic.

He Advised the public to be careful about what they ate, especially bush meat as the virus had no cure.

KATH 

The Head of Public Health at KATH, Dr Dennis Laryea, told the Daily Graphic, “What we have is a suspected virus haemorrhagic fever, which is being investigated.”

According to him, one of the possible causes could be yellow fever and not necessarily Ebola virus, noting, however, that the presence of the virus could only be confirmed after the test had been conducted on the blood sample.

He said although the facility was yet to confirm the virus, the authorities were not leaving anything to chance.

According to him, fever and bleeding could be caused by any other disease, but since Ebola had been declared a public health hazard, officials were not leaving anything to chance.

Emergency meeting

The Minister of Health, Ms Sherry Ayittey spoke to the Daily Graphic and assured the public that the ministry and its stakeholders were on high alert to effectively manage the situation in any unlikely event.

She said the stakeholders would hold an emergency meeting today to review the suspected case, the general situation in Ghana and the way forward.

She also reiterated that the Kumasi incident had not been confirmed yet and, therefore, asked members of the public not to panic.