Just days after The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the West African region free of Ebola, a second case of Ebola has been observed in less than a week.
A 38-year-old woman, who had helped to care for the first victim, has been confirmed infected. The first victim, Mariatu Jalloh, died on January 12, 2016 and tested positive for Ebola after her death.
These reports come just days after the WHO declared West Africa Ebola-free. This is a further set-back in the complete elimination of Ebola from West Africa.
According to Reuters, internal health reports showed that at least 50 people linked to Jalloh – who were potentially exposed to the virus – have gone missing. At least a dozen of them are considered likely be infected with the virus.
This is not the first time that new cases emerge after a country is officially declared Ebola free. In May, two new Ebola cases were diagnosed in neighbouring Liberia after it was declared free of the virus.
These recent cases have ignited fear in West Africans, given that the two-year Ebola epidemic has claimed over 11 000 lives across West Africa.