Mali’s Ministry of Health has confirmed the country’s first case of Ebola virus disease.
“The Ministry received positive laboratory results, from polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing, on Thursday, October 23, and informed World Health Organization (WHO) immediately.
“In line with standard procedures, samples are being sent to a WHO-approved laboratory for further testing and diagnostic work,” a statement issued by the WHO and copied to the Ghana News Agency over the weekend said.
“In telephone conversation on Thursday night, health officials gave WHO the following details about the case, which is currently undergoing intense investigation.”
The statement said the patient was a two-year-old girl, who recently arrived from Guinea accompanied by her grandmother.
It said the child’s first contact with the country’s health services occurred on October 20, when she was examined by a health care worker at Quartier Plateau in Kayes, a city in western Mali on the Senegal River.
“Symptoms on admission included a fever of 39°C, cough, bleeding from the nose, and blood in the stools.
“Test results were negative for malaria, but positive for typhoid fever. The child received paracetamol, but did not improve,” it said.
“Further testing at the country’s SEREFO laboratory confirmed Ebola virus as the causative agent on October 23.”
It said initial investigation of this case – the first confirmed in Mali – has revealed the extensive travel history of the child and her grandmother.
The statement noted that the grandmother travelled from her home in Mali to attend a funeral in the town of Kissidougou, in southern Guinea.
WHO is seeking confirmation of media reports that the funeral was for the child’s mother, who is said to have shown Ebola-like symptoms before her death.
“These and other facts will be communicated as they are confirmed,” the statement said. GNA