Liberia confirms Ebola cases as deadly virus spreads

Monday, March 31, 2014
By Paul Martin

Alphonso Toweh
SMH.au.com
March 31, 2014

Monrovia: The World Health Organisation said Liberia has confirmed two cases of the deadly Ebola virus that is suspected to have killed at least 70 people in Guinea.

The outbreak of the highly contagious Ebola, which in its more acute phase, causes vomiting, diarrhoea and external bleeding, has sent Guinea’s West African neighbours scrambling to contain the disease.

Eleven deaths in towns in northern Sierra Leone and Liberia, which shares borders with south-eastern Guinea where the outbreak was first reported, are suspected to be linked to Ebola.

The World Health Organisation said that as of March 29, seven clinical samples from adult patients from the Foya district in Liberia were tested.

“Two of those samples have tested positive for the ebola virus,” the global health organisation said in the statement, confirming for the first time cases in the country. “There have been two deaths among the suspected cases; a 35-year-old woman who died on March 21 tested positive for ebola virus while a male patient who died on March 27 tested negative,” it said.

An official of Liberia’s health ministry who requested anonymity said the government was aware and would issue a statement on Monday.

The suspected spread of disease into Liberia and Sierra Leone has stirred concern that one of the most lethal infectious diseases known could spread in a poor corner of West Africa, where health systems are ill-equipped to cope.

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