Two people from the western Uganda district of Kabale have contracted the mosquito borne disease, Rift Valley fever, according to the health ministry via Bloomberg news. Three other individuals are being tested for the virus. No deaths have been reported.
Kabale district is some 200 miles from the Ugandan capital of Kampala.
Rift Valley Fever is mosquito-borne virus that is endemic in parts of Africa including South Africa. It primarily infects animals like sheep, cattle and goats and it can have an economic impact on a community due to the loss of livestock.
Humans get infected through contact with infected animal blood or organs. Butchering and slaughtering of animals is a primary cause of transmission to humans. Certain occupations are at a higher risk of getting Rift Valley Fever like farmers, herders and veterinarians.
It can also be transmitted to humans through mosquito bites and the bites of blood-sucking flies.
Most cases of Rift Valley Fever are mild and symptoms include fever, headaches and muscle pain. However, a small percentage of people can get serious disease which includes retinitis, encephalitis and a hemorrhagic fever. Fatalities happen in less than 1 percent of those infected.
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