ZOMBO. The ministry of health has confirmed the outbreak of pneumonic plague in Paryema village, Warr sub-country, Zombo district.

So far, one person has died of the infectious disease and another tested positive of the disease is being closely monitored by health personnel.

According to health experts from the ministry of health, the current pneumonic plague in Warr Sub County is a spillover from the DRC after a Ugandan woman lost her sister and a child who had succumbed to the pneumonic plague.

Upon her return to Warr, the woman whose names have been concealed also died leaving behind one infected person.

Plague is an infectious disease caused by Yersinia pestis bacteria, usually found in small mammals and their fleas. Humans can be infected through; the bite of infected vector fleas and unprotected contact with infectious body fluids or contaminated materials among others.

While appearing on Paidha FM on Sunday, Dr George Openjtho, the public health consultant in the ministry said the line ministry has responded quickly to contain the disease.

He said sensitization of the population on preventive measures is being done and drugs have been availed for treatment of new cases as well as vaccination of frontline health workers among other interventions.

“We are there on the ground with trained health personnel doing sensitization because the people themselves are the key to preventing this disease”, he said.

Openjtho said people are being advised to avoid direct contact with infected body fluids and tissues and when handling potentially infected patients, and collecting specimens, standard precautions should apply.

He urged members of the community to be vigilant in identifying signs and symptoms and most importantly report suspected cases to the nearby health facilities.

Mr Andrew Kajoyingi, the Resident District Commissioner Zombo, appealed to the affected people to scale up hygiene and sanitation in their homesteads as one of the preventive measures to keep away vector fleas.

“People should embrace good hygiene practices because this disease is caused by fleas from infected rats and these only gang where there is poor sanitation.

Mr Erick Nimungu, the disease surveillance officer Zombo, said the disease is being quickly contained on account of the interventions from the ministry of health.

He said pneumonic plague is not new in Zombo following numerous past outbreaks that also registered negligible deaths on account of similar interventions from the ministry of health.

The pneumonic plague presents itself with head and body aches, body weakness, vomiting, sudden onset of fever, chills and nausea.

Its incubation period can be as short as 24 hours and untreated pneumonic plague can be fatal but recovery rates are high if detected and treated in time.

According to statistics from the World Health Organization, from 2010 to 2015, there 3248 cases reported worldwide, including 584 deaths.