Many people may be understandably concerned by the news of an outbreak of Ebola in Uganda. This information is intended to reassure you that there is no risk to tourists visiting the country.
How is it transmitted?
Ebola is transmittedthrough close and direct physical contact with the body fluids of an infected person.
Tourists will appreciate that they are unlikely to engage in such activities.
Who is at risk?
Historically, hospital staff and others treating infected people have been at significant risk. However medical advances mean that health workers are now vaccinated. Uninformed relatives preparing the bodies of victims for burial are also at risk.
Can the disease be contained?
Ugandan health authorities have long experience in preventing the spread of diseases. We have had a very successful story in fighting Ebola in Africa. We experienced an Ebola outbreak in 2014 but it was contained by our health experts and tourists that visited Uganda left with no Ebola. Uganda’s success story in fighting Ebola is known globally and the country has helped other African countries facing Ebola outbreaks. In 2014, a team of Ugandan doctors and health workers were deployed by World Health Organization to provide medical support for an Ebola treatment Centre in Monrovia, Liberia. Uganda is also known to have ably contained the spread of Covid-19 having registered a low number of fatalities.
Are tourism areas affected by the outbreak?
The Ebola case was reported in Mubende District. Though some tourism vehicles pass through the district, there are no tourist activities in the area and no reason to stop.
Is primate tracking risky?
No, primate tracking is safe. UWA already enforces strict distance guidelines to prevent close contact between humans and gorillas. As a further safeguard during the recent pandemic, masks were introduced. These procedures are primarily to protect primates from human diseases but also, potentially, safeguard humans too. The health of gorilla groups is also monitored frequently so, in the unlikely event of a change in the health of a gorilla group, UWA will be quickly aware and visits to this group will be discontinued.
The safety of visitors to our protected areas is important to us and we try to esure that our visitors remain safe.