Managing the Ebola epidemic in Uganda 2000-2001
Diseases such as Ebola highlight the importance of a holistic focus on health systems, as opposed to assuming that health is the preserve and concern of health professionals alone. This was the lesson Uganda learnt very quickly in managing the Ebola outbreak in 2001. Until the current epidemic in West Africa, Uganda held the unfortunate record for the greatest number of infections, with 425 recorded cases of Ebola, of which 224 people sadly died (Omaswa 2014, Kinsman 2012). Gulu district, in the north of the country, bore the greatest brunt of the epidemic, with 393 people falling ill and 203 deaths (Kinsman 2012), but it was not the only affected district. Mbarara district in the south west, recorded five cases of people contracting Ebola of whom four died and Masindi district in the west recorded 17 deaths.
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