Ministry of Health meets experts to assess Ebola risk in TRNC

A TRNC Ministry of Health working party has evaluated the risk of an outbreak of Ebola in the country, according to Bayrak TV.

Officials from the Health Ministry, experts on the disease, members of the infection control committee and academics from the Near East University’s Clinical Microbiology and Infection Department, after their evaluations agreed, on taking several precautionary measures against any possible spread of infection.

A statement issued by the Health Ministry pointed out that no one carrying the Ebola virus or any suspicious death with symptoms of Ebola virus has been reported in the TRNC so far. It also said that those who came to the country from epidemic regions of West Africa and who made contact with persons who had the virus could be infected. It however stated that the risk of infection was quite low if general measures were adopted.

“Only those who have had close contact with infected people or wild animals are under risk. On the other hand, not everyone who comes from Africa is under risk” the statement added. The ministry also advised citizens not to visit these countries unless absolutely necessary.

On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily ‘Kibris Postasi’ reports that the Turkish Cypriot medical association (KTTB), in a written statement yesterday, proposed that the TRNC government takes measures in order to protect against the Ebola virus.

The association suggested that thermal cameras should be installed at all points of entry into the country. These should monitor travellers from African countries.

BBC news reports that Keiji Fukuda, the WHO’s head of health security, said that with the right steps and measures to deal with infected people, Ebola’s spread could be stopped.

“This is not a mysterious disease. This is an infectious disease that can be contained,” he said. “It is not a virus that is spread through the air.”

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