What is Ebola?

  • Ebola virus disease (EVD) is a rare, severe and often fatal illness that occurs almost exclusively in some countries in east, central and west Africa.
  • The Ebola virus is not found in Australia.
  • People who travel in a country affected by Ebola need to heed travel warnings and minimise their risk of exposure to the virus.

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Global situation

  • There is an EVD outbreak caused by the Sudan virus (species Sudan ebolavirus) in Uganda.
  • As of 27 October 2022, 109 EVD cases, including 30 deaths, have been reported in the Western Region and Central Region of Uganda from seven districts including the capital city Kampala, Mubende, Kyegegwa, Kassanda, Kagadi, Bunyanga and Wakiso.
  • Three cases were exported to Uganda in June but there have been no further cases identified outside of DRC.
  • On 20 September 2022, Uganda health authorities declared an outbreak. This is the first Ebola disease outbreak caused by the Sudan virus in Uganda since 2012.
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NSW Ebola plans

  • NSW Health is prepared to identify and manage cases of EVD and prevent transmission to others.
  • NSW Health is notified immediately if anyone arriving from overseas shows signs of EVD.
  • The NSW Viral Haemorrhagic Fever Contingency Plan describes how imported cases of EVD would be safely managed to prevent outbreaks.
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Info for general practice

  • GPs need to remain alert to the possibility of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in sick travellers.
  • Consider EVD in patients who report fever AND a history of travel to an area affected by an Ebola outbreak within 21 days of illness onset OR contact with a known EVD case.
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Info for hospitals

  • Local health districts ensure that their hospitals are prepared for patients who may have Ebola.
  • NSW Health emergency departments have prepared for EVD cases and conduct training in personal protective equipment.
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Info for public health units

  • NSW Health has trained surveillance officers in public health units across the state.
  • If a case of EVD is found in NSW, surveillance officers will identify all those they have had contact with, provide information about EVD symptoms, and monitor to prevent any spread of infection.
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Info for laboratories

  • NSW Health Pathology's Institute for Clinical Pathology and Medical Research (ICPMR) at Westmead Hospital has a high security lab which can safely test for Ebola virus.
  • Ebola testing is done according to national and international testing guidelines.
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Current as at: Tuesday 1 November 2022
Contact page owner: Communicable Diseases