The Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo has encouraged the Ugandan authorities to consider the unknowable: vaccination of all people in danger.
Last week about 250 confirmed Ebola cases – causing an estimated 180 deaths in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda's Ministry of Health announced the launch of the Ebola vaccine. An experimental vaccine will provide approximately 2,000 healthcare workers and front-line workers at the border of our borders.
Uganda does not have confirmed Ebola cases but in the face of a new threatening threat to the Democratic Republic of Congo, a preventive measure is a welcome news given the heavy cross-border traffic.
Tire vaccination, a "new and vital tool for controlling Ebola," stresses how seriously the authorities are taking on the ever-threatening Ebola threat posed by the Congo and the dangers posed by Uganda.
According to official statistics, more than 20,000 people travel from the Democratic Republic of Congo to Uganda daily. This density of people exacerbates the risk of cross-border transfer of Ebola.
Vaccination, the first of its kind in Uganda, provides hope and a practical solution to the recurrent threat of Ebola in Congo.
This vaccination is a brave break for the occasional treatment of Ebola threats, which usually cause panic, confusion and fingerprints.
Earlier, Ebola news in DR Congo was met by the authorities' anticipatory and unseen approach when panic came to the general public.
And, in general, without strong measures, the virus infarkt quickly jumped across the Congo's western border and overcame the Uganda authorities' slow response, leaving many lost souls behind.
Amazingly, with Kampala with its global partners, a viable rapid reaction mechanism has been put in place for hemorrhagic fevers, including one unlucky Marburg.
The ministry announced in the statement last week that active searches of suspected cases will continue in all communities and that alert situations will be resumed, isolated, handled and blood samples sent for testing at the Ugandan Virus Research Institute.
Prevention and Control of Communicable Diseases Control (IPC) has been conducted in all vulnerable five districts of Kabarole, Bunyangaba, Kasima, Bundibugyo and Ntoroko. Case management and control exercises are ultimately done in seven areas, including Wakiso and Kampala.
As we have said in our previous editions, such a response is very commendable and shows that we have learned hard lessons from previous bombardments in dealing with outbreaks of government, as did the hundreds of healthcare workers in the 2014-16 epidemic that called for heavy accidents in West Africa.
A proactive approach always helps to reduce the Ebola threat.