TIME Infectious Disease

Senegal Confirms Country’s First Ebola Case

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Colorized transmission electron micrograph of the Ebola virus. Getty Images

The often-fatal disease has spread to a fifth West African country

Add Senegal to the four other West African countries—Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria—with recorded cases of Ebola.

Health Minister Awa Marie Coll Seck told reporters Friday that a young, infected Guinean man crossed the border into Senegal, the Associated Press reports. Senegal closed its border to its southeastern neighbor last week over fears that the often-fatal disease might spread into the country.

The World Health Organization announced Thursday that there have been 430 deaths from Ebola in Guinea alone. The United Nations agency reported that disease has been spreading more rapidly recently, with more than 40% of the total number of cases—3,069—occurring within the past 21 days.

The WHO has created a “roadmap” to stop the transmission of Ebola within nine months, while acknowledging that the disease could spread and infect over 20,000 people during that time.

Officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo recently said an Ebola outbreak has stricken that country as well, though they deny it’s connected to the one affecting West Africa.

[AP]

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