Ebola vaccinations underway in Uganda

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Tanzania's health minister issued an Ebola "alert" Sunday after the disease, which has killed over 1,400 people in the Democratic Republic of Congo, appeared in their shared neighbour, Uganda.

The grandmother of the boy also passed away because of the same virus in Kasese district the very next day after her grandson's death.

Health Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki has confirmed that the female patient at the Kericho Referral Hospital did not test positive to Ebola-related symptoms & illness. She further said: "We should do whatever that is possible to put a pause to this outbreak and make preventions of other deaths".

On Thursday, WHO's emergencies chief acknowledged the agency has been unable to track the origins of almost half of new Ebola cases in DR Congo amid the challenges, suggesting it does not know where the virus is spreading.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, speaking by telephone from Kampala, said: "The spread of Ebola to Uganda is a new development but the fundamental dynamics of the outbreak haven't changed".

This is the third time the World Health Organization panel has considered - but held off - making the emergency call for this DRC outbreak, which has been concentrated in the restive provinces of Ituri and North Kivu.

"We have taken precautionary measures as a result of the reported case, by placing the three in isolation as the matter is being handled" the paper quotes Dr Shadrack Mutai, the County Executive in charge of Health services, as saying.

The government has intensified Ebola Screening for all travelers using the border points.

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Kenya remains free from Ebola as test results show that a sick woman does not have the deadly hemorrhagic fever, while neighboring Uganda and Congo battle a stubborn outbreak of the disease. About 4,500 health workers have received vaccinations.

South Sudan made an emergency appeal for $12 million last Thursday to bolster its Ebola preparedness.

And the WHO is set to meet on Friday to decide whether to declare the outbreak a 'public health emergency of worldwide concern, ' which would trigger a major shift in efforts to stop the disease, it said.

"We have a lot of work to do", he said.

The outbreak met some of the criteria for a global emergency as it was both an extraordinary event and risked worldwide spread. Early Monday, the Health Ministry deployed a special team of health workers to the country's points of entry following the heightened alert on Ebola.

Only four emergencies have been declared in the past decade, including the worst ever Ebola outbreak, which hit West Africa in 2014-2016.

The killer virus, which causes fevers, uncontrollable bleeding and organ failure, quickly spread into the neighbouring Ituri region.