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Nigeria vigilant after DR Congo Ebola deaths

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At the MŽdecins Sans Frontires (MSF) isolation ward In Kampungu, in the health district of Luebo, a 43 year old patient who has been laboratory confirmed to have Ebola haemorrhagic fever(EHF) is comforted by MSF Belgium Dr Hilde Declerck. EHF is a febrile haemorrhagic illness which causes death in 50-90% of all clinically ill cases. PHOTO:AFP

Nigeria on Monday said it had stepped up health surveillance and vigilance at its entry ports after an Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo killed at least three people.

“The minister has directed the director of health services at the ports to ensure that public health workers are put on the alert,” health ministry spokeswoman Boade Akinola told AFP.

“If you go to the ports now, you will see health workers on the ground. They have been deployed to screen people coming into Nigeria for symptoms of haemorrhagic fevers.”

Nigeria had 19 confirmed cases of Ebola and seven deaths during the epidemic. The authorities were widely praised for their quick response in implementing emergency measures.

There are no direct flights with DR Congo but Nigeria’s health minister Isaac Adewole has ordered health care providers and the public to be on full alert.

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