U.S. citizen tested for Ebola in Ghana

by Reuters
Monday, 7 July 2014 11:45 GMT

Health workers take blood samples for Ebola virus testing at a screening tent in the local government hospital in Kenema, Sierra Leone, June 30, 2014 REUTERS/Tommy Trenchard

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ACCRA, July 7 (Reuters) - A U.S. citizen in Ghana is being tested for Ebola after he fell ill following a trip to two countries in the region battling the disease, a senior government official said on Monday.

"He is an American and records showed that he had been to Guinea and Sierra Leone in the past few weeks," a senior health ministry official told Reuters. Test results are expected later on Monday.

The Ministry of Health said in a statement a patient, who has not been named, was in quarantine at Nyaho clinic in Accra and tests were being conducted at Noguchi Memorial Institute of Medical Research in Accra. It urged the public to remain calm.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. embassy in Ghana said it had been informed by the laboratory that a U.S. citizen was being tested for suspected Ebola and it was working to confirm this.

Health officials have called for regional action to halt the world's deadliest outbreak of the disease, which has spread across Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, killing at least 467 people since February.

Ebola causes fever, vomiting, bleeding and diarrhoea and kills up to 90 percent of those it infects. Highly contagious, it is transmitted through contact with blood or other fluids.

A previous suspected Ebola case in Ghana tested negative in April.

<For a map of the region affected by Ebola, please click on http://link.reuters.com/fyj32w >

(Reporting by Kwasi Kpodo and Matthew Mpoke Bigg; Editing by David Lewis and Robin Pomeroy)

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