In a follow-up to a report yesterday, the World Health Organization (WHO) released details on the confirmed Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in Mali today.
The Mali Ministry of Health received positive laboratory results, from PCR testing, on Thursday and informed WHO immediately. In line with standard procedures, samples are being sent to a WHO-approved laboratory for further testing and diagnostic work.
The investigation into the case reveals the following information to date:
The patient is a two-year-old girl, who recently arrived from Guinea accompanied by her grandmother. The child’s first contact with the country’s health services occurred on 20 October, when she was examined by a health care worker at Quartier Plateau in Kayes, a city in western Mali on the Senegal River.
Kayes has a population of around 128 000 people. It is located about 600 kilometres from the capital city of Bamako and lies near the border between Mali and Senegal.
The health-care worker referred the grandmother and child to the Fousseyni Daou Hospital, in the same city, where she was admitted to the paediatric ward on the following day, on 21 October. Symptoms on admission included a fever of 39°C, cough, bleeding from the nose, and blood in the stools.
Test results were negative for malaria, but positive for typhoid fever. The child received paracetamol, but did not improve. Further testing at the country’s SEREFO laboratory confirmed Ebola virus as the causative agent on 23 October.
Initial investigation of this case – the first confirmed in Mali – has revealed the extensive travel history of the child and her grandmother. The grandmother travelled from her home in Mali to attend a funeral in the town of Kissidougou, in southern Guinea.
WHO is seeking confirmation of media reports that the funeral was for the child’s mother, who is said to have shown Ebola-like symptoms before her death. These and other facts will be communicated as they are confirmed.
On 19 October, the grandmother left Guinea to return to Mali, taking the child with her. The case history revealed that bleeding from the nose began while both were still in Guinea, meaning that the child was symptomatic during their travels through Mali.
Travel was by public transport through Keweni, Kankan, Sigouri, and Kouremale to Bamako. The two stayed in Bamako for two hours before travelling on to Kayes. Multiple opportunities for exposure occurred when the child was visibly symptomatic.