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Mother and baby in Ebola scare test negative for deadly virus

By The Siberian Times Reporter
21 October 2014

Relief as hospital drama in Russian Far East ends with pair on the mend as global death toll rises.

Anna Popova, Russia’s chief state sanitary doctor, said:'Tests on Ebola were negative'. Picture: The Siberian Times 

A mother and baby hospitalised in Siberia amid fears they had contracted Ebola are not carrying the deadly virus, it has been confirmed. Doctors in Komsomolsk-on-Amur were monitoring the pair after they showed symptoms of an acute respiratory viral infection after a visit to western Africa.

The baby was suffering from a fever upon arrival in Russia following a number of flights to get home and both her and her mother were placed in an isolation unit while tests were carried out. By Saturday it had emerged the little girl’s condition was improving and now health officials have confirmed the mother and daughter have been given the all-clear.

Anna Popova, Russia’s chief state sanitary doctor, said:'Tests on Ebola were negative'.

Minister of Health of Khabarovsk, Krai Alexander Vitko, added that the initial diagnosis of physicians – an acute respiratory infection – had been confirmed.

He said: 'At the moment the child’s condition is good and her temperature has subsided'.

The baby has a Russian mother and a Nigerian father, and the woman and her daughter had taken three flights to get from Africa back to Komsomolsk-on-Amur.

After being taken to hospital, tests for Ebola were carried out, with results analysed at Vector, the Russian State Centre of Virology and Biotechnology, in Koltsovo, Novosibirsk. The centre is one of just two places in the world permitted to hold stocks of the virus for research purposes.

Following their scare, the baby’s mother said:'It took us three long flights and stopovers to get from Nigeria to Komsomolsk-on-Amur. I suspect our daughter could have caught her fever then'.

The all-clear comes as the Ebola crisis around the world deepens, with a total of 4,500 people now known to have died from the outbreak. Last week the Siberian Times told how scientists at Vector are at the forefront of the bid to find a cure for the disease, with a possible vaccine currently being tested.

Researchers there have been analysing Ebola since the 1980s and have already been able to identify which genome will make the virus dangerous and contagious.There is no officially approved cure for the disease but it is hoped a breakthrough can be made before the end of the year.

The outbreak has killed more than 4,500 people in West Africa, mostly in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone, with an estimated 70 per cent of those infected thought to have died. Meanwhile Russian authorities also planning to establish a new system for checking passengers for the signs of Ebola.

Comments (1)

This is good news...hope it stays that way.
jojnjo, Dublin
21/10/2014 09:24
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