Ebola virus vaccination Starts in Kasese district

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The vaccination against the Ebola virus has commenced in Kasese district. It is being conducted at Kagando, Bwera and Kilembe Mines Hospitals.

The exercise targets health workers in districts that neighbour the Democratic Republic of Congo where the virus has claimed more than 180 lives since August this year.

About 680 medical workers in Kasese will be vaccinated with the rVS-zebron vaccine after the exercise was rolled to Kasese upon completion of Ntoroko.

Other districts in which the vaccination will be carried out include Bundibugyo, Kisoro, Hoima Kabarole and Bunyangabu districts, which are considered high-risk areas because of their proximity to the DRC.

rVS-zebron is the first highly effective Ebola vaccine since the first outbreak of the disease more than 40 years ago.

Dr Alphonse Gatare, the Medical Superintendent Bwera Hospital, said that the vaccination comes as a sigh of relief to the medical workers at the hospital that have been handling most suspicious cases in the district.

Gatare added that the close to 180 health workers at the facility can now conduct their duties with some level of confidence that they are protected against the disease.

Rev. Can. Benson Baguma, the Executive Director Kagando Rural Development Center-KARUDEC which oversees Kagando Hospital argued that there was need to also extend the vaccination to health trainees, drivers and other employees in the health facilities.

However, Dr BenardOpar, Programmes Manager Uganda National Expanded Program on Immunization-UNEPI, noted that vaccination is still reserved to the medical workers because they are prone to more risks.

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