The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is sending personnel to Africa to prevent outbreaks of Marburg virus and is urging travelers to certain countries to take precautions.
Equatorial Guinea and Tanzania are facing the first known outbreaks of Marburg virus, a close relative of Ebola, an uncontrolled hemorrhagic fever. This week, the CDC Passengers insisted For both countries, avoid contact with sick people and monitor for symptoms 21 days after leaving the area. Travelers should visit Equatorial Guinea Improved precautions Also avoid non-essential travel to epidemic-prone provinces, the agency said.
In the United States, the agency will issue notices to airport monitors asking travelers from Equatorial Guinea and Tanzania to monitor for symptoms of the virus for 21 days and seek immediate treatment if they become ill. They will receive a reminder to monitor symptoms via text.
CDC also provides a “centralized” emergency response; It’s not as all-encompassing as the CDC makes its position Emergency Operations Center, like covid-19 and mpox. But it will refocus the efforts and attention of staff at its National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases on responding to outbreaks in two different countries on opposite sides of Africa, signaling the spread of the deadly hemorrhagic fever.
Equatorial Guinea, on the coast of West Africa, declared an outbreak of Marburg virus in mid-February, with cases spreading across several provinces. As of March 22, Equatorial Guinea had 13 confirmed cases, including nine deaths and one recovery. According to the World Health Organization. A team of six scientists from the CDC is already on the ground there.
Tanzania, a country on the coast of East Africa, declared an outbreak of Marburg virus disease on March 21, with cases reported in two villages in the Kagera region. According to the CDC. As of March 22, Tanzania has eight confirmed cases, including five deaths.
Marburg virus is a rare and deadly virus that causes fever, chills, muscle aches, rash, sore throat, diarrhea, weakness, or unexplained bleeding or bruising. It is transmitted through contact with bodily fluids and contaminated surfaces. People can also catch it from infected animals. It’s fatal in about half of those who get it. Other countries in Africa have had to deal with outbreaks before.
In its early stages, the infection is difficult to distinguish from other diseases, so a history of travel to any of those countries is essential to help doctors diagnose it.