Mali’s double whammy…”A second outbreak of Ebola is more worrying”

Saturday, November 15, 2014
By Paul Martin

Economist.com
Nov 14th 2014

MALI thought it had got off lightly. As the Ebola epidemic claimed thousands of lives across the border to the south in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, Mali recorded just a single case of the virus. It was carried by an infected two-year-old girl, who had been brought by her grandmother from Guinea, travelling 1,200km (745 miles) by bus and taxi with the feverish child. She died in hospital in the city of Kayes on October 24th (see WHO situation report here).

About one hundred people who had come into contact with the girl were traced and isolated. Three weeks later, on November 10th, the Malian authorities held a ceremony to mark the release from observation of a first batch of contacts—a group of 29 people in a family compound in the capital, Bamako, that had briefly hosted the sick child during her journey. None had developed symptoms. Ministers and officials told television reporters that vigilance was still needed, but at least the family in Bamako was free of Ebola; it seemed likely that others who had been in contact with the girl in Kayes would soon be declared Ebola-free.

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