South Sudan free from Ebola, Cholera


Undersecretary Ministry of Health, Dr. Makur Matur Koriom with Helen Rees in the past event (file photo):

By Moses Gum Degur and Martha David

The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization said South Sudan is free from Ebola and Cholera cases amid fear of outbreak.

The Undersecretary in the Ministry of Health Makur Matur Koriom dismissed the alleged reports of endemic cases of communicable diseases like Ebola and Cholera.

The official was speaking to the press about the state of public health in the country on Thursday in Juba.

This came days after a Congolese resident residing in Makpandu County in Western Equatoria developed symptoms like those of Ebola and was rushed for medical checkup. Laboratory test on sample case on the virus were negative.

“There is no Ebola case reported in South Sudan. The country is on high alert following the confirmation in neighboring DRC,” Makur said.

He said South Sudan embarked on a systematic process to enhance readiness capacities to respond to potential importation of Ebola cases.

“As part of these efforts, the national Ebola task force was activated, surveillance enhanced and screening of international travelers at Juba International Airport is ongoing”, Makur explained.

He added to show seriousness of the Ministry and the partners, an isolation facility has been identified for case management in case of any confirmed outbreak.

The undersecretary further assured diseases cholera, guinea worm and polio are no longer in the country.

“Cholera surveillance is ongoing with no new cases reported in 2018. The last confirmed case was in December, 2017 in Juba. Up to now there is nothing yet reported,” he explained.

He said South Sudan has adapted a global strategy for eliminating cholera by 2030 which entails strengthening coordination, enhancing investigation and response to suspect outbreaks, risk communication and health promotion.

Makur added that the country has also made a steady progress towards eliminating guinea worm and wild polio virus.

He urges the public to report any case of any suspected out break to health authorities for immediate response.

The ministry of health reiterated commitment to enhance national public health security, urging the public to continue observing measures to promote health and prevent common diseases.

In the past, South Sudan has reported three outbreaks on Ebola in 1976, 1979 and 2004 in Nzara, Yambio and Maridi which were successfully controlled.

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