Ebola Virus Infects Man in Ivory Coast

From Associated Press

The deadly Ebola virus, which killed 244 people in a Zairian city this year, has infected a man in Ivory Coast, health officials said Friday.

The lone case was diagnosed in a 25-year-old Liberian man who health officials said was isolated in a hospital outside Tabou, near Ivory Coast's border with Liberia.

The man was admitted to a hospital last week with Ebola symptoms, including fever, diarrhea and vomiting.

After initial tests indicated Ebola, more tests were carried out at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, where Ebola was confirmed.

Unlike the May outbreak in Kikwit, Zaire, which spread rapidly and infected more than 300 people, it seemed unlikely this case would spin out of control. Ivory Coast health officials are familiar with how to contain Ebola since the well-publicized Zaire outbreak, which put governments throughout west Africa on alert.

In addition, health facilities in Ivory Coast are far superior to those in Zaire, where government plundering of state coffers left social services a shambles.

The World Health Organization said the Liberian man appeared to be recovering. Members of the WHO team were trying to trace people who had contact with him.

Ebola is spread through contact with bodily fluids. The fatality rate is about 80%, and there is no known cure or vaccine. Death usually occurs within a week.

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