President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta also urged the World Health
Organization (WHO) and health services in Mali and neighboring
states to set up a permanent information exchange to disseminate
information about public health and hygiene.
The worst outbreak of the virus on record has claimed at least 5,160
lives in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea and has led to a global
watch for cases outside the region. Mali shares an 800 km (500 mile)
border with Guinea.
"The president of the republic has asked the prime minister to
urgently look at the entire system put in place to fight Ebola and
to strengthen health controls at the different frontier posts," a
government statement said late on Wednesday.
The nurse's death on Tuesday prompted the quarantine of more than 90
people including U.N. peacekeepers. In its first case, a
two-old-girl infected with Ebola in Guinea arrived in Mali and died
Mali must now trace others who had contact with the nurse and three
others infected, just as an initial group of people linked to the
girl completed their 21-day quarantine on Tuesday. Ebola's maximum
incubation period is 21 days.
Senior health ministry official Ousmane Doumbia told journalists the
government was keeping borders open in line with WHO guidelines.
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The man, a Muslim imam from the border town of Kouremale, was never
tested for Ebola. In a series of rites that may have exposed many
mourners to the deadly virus, his highly contagious body was washed
in a Bamako mosque and returned to Guinea for burial without
precautions against Ebola.
The WHO said there were now four confirmed and probable Ebola deaths
in Mali, adding that one was a person who visited the imam in
hospital. A doctor at the Pasteur Clinic where the nurse worked is
also suspected of having contracted Ebola.
(Writing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg; Editing by Anna Willard)
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