الأربعاء، 22 أكتوبر، 2014

Ebola in Sudan?

According to WHO, the most severe outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease has started in west Africa in Dec 2013 when the first case was identified in Guinea. The outbreak incited a worldwide panic as there is no certain medication for the disease and it has 90% mortality rates.

Fears among Sudanese people from Ebola outbreak in Sudan evolved after the Sudanese Football Association offered to host the Africa Cup of Nation finals in January 2015 after Morocco rejected hosting the tournaments. The news incited public anger among social media users, saying that our lives and well being worth more than your relations to confederation of African football. The consumers' protection society has issued a press statement on 14 Oct against the decision calling the officials to postpone hosting the event. Although the government of Sudan has refused to host the tournaments; yet the Sudanese Football Association seems not convinced by the decision according to Sudan Tribune.

Sudan is a country with loose boarders' control and a huge population mobility from and to west and central Africa with across boarders tribes, conflict driven displacement and migration; never mentioning the centralized health services and poor primary health care that exclude millions from accessing health services and makes it difficult to diagnose and report the possible cases of Ebola.

On Oct 19 an unofficial source in Khartoum Teaching Hospital confirmed that one patient was diagnosed with Ebola, One day after, workers at oil companies in West Kordofan State said that they have received alerts from their employers as there is a patient was identified with Ebola in Alfola hospital, however there is no official statement about the two cases yet.

On 21st, October, Altaghyeer an online newspaper cited a story from Almeghar Alsyasi, a daily newspaper in Sudan claims that WHO announced there are 19 identified cases in South Sudan, and Sudan government announced emergency situation on its boarders and ports. However nothing on WHO  website on Ebola cases in South Sudan till the moment of writing this post. According to Sudan Tribune, the cabinet in South Sudan advised people not to shake hands in order to avoid catching the infection, yet this sounds not enough as there are more than 91% of the population lacking the improved sanitation facilities(world bank statistics of 2009-2013) beside the poor hygiene, lack of clean water resources in both Sudan and south Sudan.

The government of Sudan seems to be taking measures of boarders control, while Sudan Shadow Government; a youth initiative aiming to change the political practice in Sudan has prepared and published health education materials on Ebola prevention. The following days might be hard on Sudanese people and even the whole regions of East Africa and Middle East.




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