Ebola GHS dismisses rumour of Ebola outbreak

The Ghana Healthy Service said the general public was therefore implored to stop circulating the audio with the false information.

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The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has dismissed claims of an Ebola outbreak over reports circulating on social media.

Reports circulating on various social media platforms, suggested that the Ebola Viral Disease (EVD) was in Ghana, but some government officials wanted to keep it a secret from the public.

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A statement signed by the acting Director of GHS said "Considering the seriousness of EVD, a highly infectious disease that spreads quickly from person to person and is characterised by an extremely high death rate, the message has high potential to cause fear and panic to the general population if we allow it to circulate without responding to it."

The general public was therefore implored to stop circulating the audio with the false information.

Below is the statement:

FALSE RUMOURS OF EBOLA OUTBREAK IN GHANA

The attention of the Ministry of Health/Ghana Health Service has been drawn to a sound bite (voice audio) circulating false a message on social media that there is an outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in Ghana. This very piece of false information (same message, delivered by same voice) was circulated in 2015 during the outbreak of Ebola in the sub-region. This information is FALSE.

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The public is hereby advised to ignore any such audio suggesting an outbreak of EVD. Considering the seriousness of EVD, a highly infectious disease that spreads quickly from person to person and is characterised by an extremely high death rate, the message has high potential to cause fear and panic to the general population if we allow it to circulate without responding to it.

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The Ministry of Health and Ghana Health Service wish to assure the general population that information within the audio clip indicating that there is Ebola outbreak in Ghana is false and has no basis. Surveillance on EVD and all other priority diseases is ongoing and no case of EVD has been detected as indicated in the clip. It is extremely difficult and indeed impossible to have a case of EVD and decide to hide it from the general public as the audio suggests. It is simply impossible to consider hiding case(s) of Ebola as the disease would be spreading to others and naturally come out. We will continue to do our best to prevent and protect the nation against the introduction of Ebola and any similar diseases into the country. Furthermore, we wish to assure the general public that, in accordance with the responsibility entrusted on us, the true and exact situation of any unfortunate event’s occurrence related to EVD or any other health hazard would be communicated to the general public accordingly.

The outbreak of EVD in West Africa started in December 2013 and the sub-region was declared Ebola-free by World Health Organisation (WHO) in October, 2015. Globally, a total of ten (10) countries were affected. Thankfully Ghana was not among the affected countries, as Ghana never recorded any confirmed case as close as we have been monitoring. All suspected cases in the country have tested negative for Ebola and other related diseases.

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The general public should continue to adhere to the preventive measures of Ebola and other infectious diseases including regular hand-washing with soap under clean running water. Finally, we wish to entreat the public to stop circulating these voice audios to avoid unnecessary panic among the general population.

Thank you.

SIGNED 
THE AG. DIRECTOR GENERAL GHANA HEALTH SERVICE

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