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Published 9th October 2014, 11:2am

Ebola Virus Key Facts:

There is no Ebola in the Cayman Islands.

Ebola virus disease is a severe, often fatal illness, transmitted by contact with blood, bodily secretions or organs of an infected person or animal.

The Ebola virus affects animals such as monkeys, gorillas, chimpanzees etc. and is thought to have been transmitted to humans by the handling or butchering of such infected animals.

The virus first appeared in 1976 in two simultaneous outbreaks; one near the Ebola River in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the other in Sudan.

There is an ongoing outbreak in West Africa, initially reported in March 2014 and has involved three countries: Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. WHO has declared it as a major international public health concern.

The disease is often characterized by the sudden onset of fever, weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat followed by vomiting, diarrhea, rash, impaired kidney and liver function and in some cases both internal and external bleeding.

There is no specific treatment available, although new drug therapies are being evaluated.

There is no licensed vaccine against ebola virus disease although several are being tested.

As transmission is through blood and body fluids, prevention is by protecting against such exposures and maintaining personal hygiene through sanitization and hand washing.

For further information contact the Public Health Department 244-2648 or visit http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/ or www.carpha.org

WHO EBOLA FACT SHEET
Frequently asked questions on Ebola virus disease
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT EBOLA
The 2014 Ebola epidemic is the largest in history
CDC EBOLA FACT SHEET
CDC Ebola Fact Sheet