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Uganda confirms 1st Ebola case outside outbreak in Congo

KAMPALA, Uganda — Uganda’s health ministry says a patient has tested positive for Ebola in what is the first cross-border case of the deadly virus since an outbreak started in neighboring Congo last year.

The ministry said Tuesday the patient is a Congolese woman in a district near the Congo border.

Confirmation of cross-border contamination is a blow to local health officials who have been monitoring the border and isolating probable Ebola patients.

There have been more than 2,000 confirmed and probable cases of the Ebola virus in Congo since August, with nearly 1,400 deaths.

In April an expert committee of the WHO decided that Congo’s outbreak, while of “deep concern,” was not yet a global health emergency.

International spread of a disease as contagious as Ebola is one of the major criteria WHO considers before declaring a situation to be a global health emergency.

Uganda has had multiple outbreaks of Ebola since 2000.

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