KAMPALA: A recent outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus is "under control" but has not yet been fully eradicated, a Ugandan health official said Monday.
Two suspicious cases were admitted to a hospital close to the scene of the outbreak over the weekend, bringing to nine the total number of people currently in isolation, the official said.
"We can now comfortably say that it is under control, but cannot say that we are absolutely finished with it," Paul Kagwa, assistant commissioner at the Ugandan health ministry, told AFP. The last confirmed case was on August 4.
Sixteen people have died since the latest outbreak started in early July in Uganda's western Kibale district, some 200 kilometres (120 miles) from Kampala, and around 50 kilometres from the border with Democratic Republic of Congo.
A total of 165 people living in the community remain under observation, while 243 people who were thought to have come into contact with the virus have turned out negative, Kagwa said.
The total incubation period for Ebola is around 21 days, meaning that it would take roughly two more weeks before the outbreak can be declared over, Kagwa said.
The rare haemorrhagic disease, named after a small river in DR Congo, killed 37 people in western Uganda in 2007 and at least 170 in the north of the country in 2000. (AFP)