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Ebola poses low public health risk to Singapore: MOH

This is because person-to-person transmission results from direct contact with bodily fluids of those infected, and there is low travel connectivity to West Africa where the current outbreak remains limited to,said a Ministry of Health spokesman. 

SINGAPORE: The Ministry of Health issued an advisory on Thursday (July 31) asking the public not to be alarmed by recent reports regarding the spread of Ebola.

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has infected about 1,200 people since the start of the year. Suspected cases in Britain and Hong Kong have since tested negative, and authorities have put precautionary measures in place. 

"The Ministry of Health’s current assessment is that Ebola poses a low public health risk to Singapore since person-to-person transmission results from direct contact with bodily fluids of those infected, and there is low travel connectivity to West Africa where the current outbreak remains limited to," said an MOH spokesman. 

"Our hospitals will be vigilant in testing for Ebola where clinically indicated, such as in patients with the symptoms and a compatible travel history. All suspected and confirmed cases will be isolated. In addition, the Ministry will conduct contact tracing and all close contacts will be quarantined, if a case is detected."

MOH is also in close contact with the World Health Organisation and its international counterparts, it said, and will continue to monitor the situation. To reduce the risk of exposure to Ebola, it advises Singaporeans travelling to affected areas to maintain vigilance and adopt the following general health precautions when overseas:

  • Practice frequent hand washing (e.g. after going to toilet, or when hands are soiled);
  • Avoid direct contact with with blood, secretions or other body fluids of infected living or dead persons or animals, as well as environments that have become contaminated with these infectious fluids such as soiled clothing, bed linen, or used needles;
  • Avoid participating in burial ceremonies which require direct contact with the body of a deceased infected person.
  • Avoid contact with wild animals, including bats, monkeys, apes, chimpanzee and gorillas, whether alive or dead, including their raw or undercooked meat;
  • Returning travellers from affected areas or travellers who suspect that they have been exposed to Ebola virus should seek immediate medical attention and mention their recent travel to the attending physician if they develop any disease symptoms while travelling in or within three weeks of being in any of the areas.


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