Egypt on high alert to prevent entry of Marburg virus into country

The Egyptian Health and Population Ministry has issued an order that anyone coming from Equatorial Guinea must be quarantined before allowed to enter the country following an outbreak of the Marburg virus.

Nine people died have died in the latest outbreak in eastern Equatorial Guinea, Central Africa, where authorities imposed a quarantine in one of the provinces to contain the epidemic.

The ministry said that the incubation period for the disease ranges between two and 21 days, and that the virus is transmitted through contact with the patient’s blood or other body fluids that contain the virus.

A circular from the Egyptian Health and Population Ministry stated that quarantine departments must notify  passports authorities that passengers coming from Equatorial Guinea must be quarantined, before being allowed to enter the country.


Quarantine measures

The circular indicated that health measures for quarantine are to sort all passengers and crews of means of transport coming from the Equatorial Guinea, on all direct or indirect flights included in the operating schedules, special flights or cargo flights.

It added that this is being done by the quarantine crews at the entry points through thermographic cameras, thermal gates, or remote temperature measuring devices, without interfering with the movement of passengers.

The preventive medicine sector added that medical teams in quarantine should take maximum precautions to combat infection when dealing with similar cases, transfer suspected cases to a fever hospital and notify the health directorates, the preventive room and the general administration of quarantine immediately.

The circular of the Preventive Medicine Sector added that in the event of a suspected case on board the means of transport coming from Equatorial Guinea, the means of transport shall be disinfected in accordance with the preventive instructions, and the waste of the means of transport shall be considered hazardous waste, and this waste shall be safely disposed of under the supervision of the quarantine.

The Ministry of Health and Population specified that the suspected case is one that suffers from a sudden onset of fever, without response to treatment, accompanied by bloody diarrhea, bleeding gums, or bleeding in the urine or eyes.

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