Liberia’s Chief Medical Officer and deputy Health Minister, Dr. Francis Kateh has disclosed that the latest Ebola case has hit Paynesville, Montserrado County.
The disclosure followed the recent Ebola outbreak in Newodein community, Lower Margibi County, which led to the death of a 17-year-old lad.
Dr. Kateh said the latest confirmed case involves a resident of Paynesville Community, a densely populated Monrovia suburb.
He added that a total of 124 contacts are being followed by health care workers in Margibi County where the 17-year-old lad died, while 16 contacts are currently being followed from the latest confirmed case in Paynesville.
Briefing reporters Tuesday at the Ministry of Information on Capitol Hill, the Deputy Minister said in summary the number of new cases in the entire country has increased to six with four already confirmedas Ebola and the victims are in Ebola Treatment Unit or ETU, while the other two are disease related cases.
“After receiving the information about the recent outbreak from lower Margibi, we knew that there was going to be huge contacts made by citizens; before the boy could die he fell sick, leaving others to visit his residence, something which has extended to more contact of the virus”, he narrated.
According to him, the only thing or idea that would help in putting stop to more cases is honesty by citizens, stressing, “We need to be honest to ourselves; if anyone came in direct contact with the 17-year-old boy, there is a need to inform health care workers instead of lying, because the act of hiding yourself will only result to more new cases and endanger the lives of others, who may be staying in the community”.
Dr. Kateh said the practice of conceiving information from health care workers put at risk those who made direct contact with individuals that had already contracted the virus or those that died from the virus, cautioning that citizens must always be on the alert against making additional contacts and to keep adhering to preventive measures prescribed by health authorities such hands washing, avoiding sick people or touching dead bodies, among others.
The Chief Medical Officer however said investigation is still ongoing to identify source of the most recent outbreak in the country, and appealed to residents of A.B. Tolbert Road community, currently quarantined, to remain calm. “We are doing everything in our powers to ensure that no one gets infected with the virus”, CMO Kateh assured. By Lewis S. Teh – Editing by Jonathan Browne