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From Africa to Canada: Deadly Ebola virus outbreak gets mobile

Published time: March 25, 2014 11:23
Reuters/Edward Echwalu

Reuters/Edward Echwalu

The deadly Ebola virus has made its way towards Canada, as a local came from Africa with suspicious symptoms. It comes after the ‘molecular shark’, as the virus is branded, killed 59 in West Africa.

The local Health Ministry in Canada's Saskatchewan province said a man had been put in solitary confinement, with the test results expected on Tuesday. The patient’s family also remains in quarantine.

Dr. Denise Werker, the province's deputy chief medical officer, declined to say how long the man had been in Africa but said he only fell ill after returning to Canada.

"As of this morning six cases have been reported of which five have already died - four female adults and one male child. One of the suspected cases, a female child, is under treatment," Liberian Health Minister Walter Gwenigale said in a statement, as quoted by AFP.

The patients were mostly Liberian citizens, mainly because they attended a funeral in an Ebola-hit region of Guinea and were infected there, Doctors Without Borders reported.

"All we know at this point is that we have a person who is critically ill who traveled from a country where these diseases occur," Denise Werker, joint director of health in Saskatchewan, in western Canada, told AFP.

The scientists are actually warning that the epidemic risks spreading due to mobility – both among humans and animals.

"People, goods and animals -- such as sheep, goats and cows used in Sierra Leone -- come from Guinea and it is these districts that they are brought into. And in these areas, people hunt for birds, monkeys and baboons for food," Sierra Leonean aid organization the Health for All Coalition told AFP.

The Ebola virus kills from 25 to 90 per cent of those who are infected, and no vaccine or treatment is available.

The decease’s symptoms include severe fever and muscle pain, weakness, vomiting and diarrhea. Afterwards, organs shut down, causing unstoppable bleeding. The virus is called ‘a molecular shark’ in health publications.

Transmission to humans can come from wild animals or from direct contact from infected human blood, feces or sweat, or by sexual contact and the unprotected handling of contaminated corpses.

The latest epidemic of Ebola, in the DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo) infected 62 people, with 34 of them dying over 2012.

Comments (38)


Karl Marx 03.04.2014 02:46

Sadly, if there is a huge epidemic of Ebola in Africa, I doubt that the West will do more than a token effort. After all, the biggest obstacle to the West taking Africa's resources is the resistance of the Africans. If they are mostly wiped out, the survivors would be grateful for the money to be gained from selling petroleum, minerals, etc to US and EU corporations.


Robert Andrade 29.03.2014 11:58

Once that plane landed in Canada Everyone on that plane should have been quarantine for about a week. Checked for any signs of Ebola since they had left west Africa that had 59 deaths so far from a Ebola out break. Notice how the doctor say this person is critically ill , they don't want to scare you that he has Ebola if it is true I sure hope Ebola virus was not brought into your country.


MeMee Whooser 26.03.2014 19:27

Wow this is concerning its basically next door to us. Praying it gets controlled and done with. Those poor people...

View all comments (38)
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