WHO not advocating ban on international travel: Islam

12 Aug 2014 13:40pm
WINDHOEK, 12 AUG (NAMPA) - The World Health Organisation (WHO) is not advocating for a ban on international travellers, but wants countries affected by the Ebola virus to provide screening facilities.
This was said by WHO country representative Dr Monir Islam at a media briefing in Windhoek on Monday.
Islam said the four countries affected so far (Nigeria, Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone) should provide screening facilities and strict assessment to screen people for a raised body temperature and for any Ebola signs and symptoms.
Symptoms of the Ebola virus include nausea; a loss of appetite; diarrhoea and vomiting with or without blood; skin rashes; abdominal pain; cough; chest pain; and difficulty breathing.
“If there are any suspected cases, those people should not be allowed to travel outside the country or anywhere else in the country. They must be isolated and monitored for 21 days,” he said.
A media statement issued by Islam on the meeting of the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee regarding the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa on Monday said there should be no general ban on international travel or trade.
It added that all states should prepare to detect, investigate and manage Ebola cases. This should include assured access to a qualified diagnostic laboratory for the virus and, where appropriate, the capacity to manage travellers originating from known Ebola-infected areas who arrive at international airports or major land crossing points with unexplained febrile (showing symptoms of fever) illness.
The general public should also be provided with accurate and relevant information on the outbreak and measures to reduce the risk of exposure.
The International Health Regulations Emergency Committee meeting was held in Geneva on 06 and 07 August 2014.
The Ebola virus has killed almost 1 000 people in West Africa since January this year.