A DISEASE that medical doctors believe is Ebola appears to be suspected in the Ethiopian capital. One west African origin diplomat has been admitted for flu like symptoms in Saint Yared General Hospital. Three more people have been also admitted to the Black Lion hospital, with a reported cases of bleeding and fever.
Doctors in black lion hospital, speaking anonymously because of the sensitivity of the issue and afraid of reprisal action from government officials, are saying it is Ebola. The safety of the health staff and other patients still unknown.
Black Lions hospital employees have been instructed not to speak of suspected Ebola cases under threat of imprisonment. Source in Black Lion Hospital said “unless the governments take action early and announce to the people for public health prevention, it will not be easy to bring Ebola outbreak under control.”
“It may be spreading very quickly in parts of the city where sanitation is poor ” a doctor said.
There are no reliable estimates so far of severity, mortality and morbidity rates of the disease due to severe restriction of free media in the country and it is difficult to verify it in this most secretive and totalitarian state in the world.
Keseteberhan Admassu (MD), Minister of Health, said that Ebola was not a national security for Ethiopia and banning flights to and from West Africa was unnecessary. Most health experts smash the minister remarks and the government’s passive response for the disease.
The Ethiopian Government has so far refused to confirm the existence of the disease. On several occasions, the Government has denied the existence of Ebola in Ethiopia for fear that acknowledging it will deprive the tourism and the economy and inflame the current public anger.
Recently the Ethiopian Ministry of Health announced the establishment of a new specialized Ebola treatment hospital. But sources reported that the facility hasn’t adequately equipped and set up with Bio safety level 3 and 4 recommendation.
Ethiopia’s health care system is among the least developed in Sub-Saharan Africa and is not, at present, able to effectively cope with the Ebola outbreak. A lack of leadership from government to devise and implement emergency public health strategies has contributed to an alarming level of vulnerability to Ebola epidemics.
Ethiopia’s national carrier is a major airline connecting countries across Africa and has on its part been pursuing the usual flights into West Africa. Bole international airport so far haven’t any infrared thermometers or non-contact thermometers to measure body temperature of in-bound and out- bound passengers for possible Ebola symptoms.
Deaths from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, including recent fatalities in the United States and Spain, have exceeded 4,000 people according to the latest figures released by the World Health Organization.
Ebola is a rare and deadly disease, which is caused by infection with one of the Ebola viruses. It is spread by direct contact with a sick person’s blood or body fluids and may also spread by contact with contaminated objects or infected animals. Experts fear Ebola virus could spread through the air and not just through contact with bodily fluid. There is no vaccine or specific treatment for Ebola, and up to 85 per cent of persons, who get the disease, die. Symptoms include fever, headache, joint and muscle aches, sore throat, and weakness, followed by diarrhea, vomiting and stomach pain. Skin rash, red eyes, and internal and external bleeding may be seen in some patients.