BY PHYLLIS MBANJE
Passengers aboard a fastjet Airways flight, which landed at Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport on Wednesday went into a panic mode after one of the passengers complained of a headache and body weakness, symptoms synonymous with the dreaded Ebola virus.
The unidentified man, believed to be a cross-border truck driver, was coming home for his holiday when he suddenly fell ill.
Director of epidemiology and disease control at the Ministry of Health and Child Care, Portia Manangazira said they made arrangements to have him carted in an ambulance for further assessment.
“Actually, by the time he arrived at the hospital his temperature had lowered. We are not worried, tests were conducted and correct procedures followed,” she said.
The plane was disinfected as per the standard procedure.
“There is no need to panic. Actually it showed that our surveillance system is functional,” Manangazira said.
Harare city health director, Prosper Chonzi said the man had no critical symptoms synonymous with Ebola and his temperature was normal as of Wednesday.
“He was just complaining of a headache. It could be anything. The symptoms are not typically those of Ebola. He has no fever, there was no bleeding anywhere on his body and his temperature is normal,” he said.
“The patient flew in from South Africa after he had been to Lubumbashi where he left his delivery truck. Lubumbashi has no known cases of Ebola, but the northern cities.”
Chonzi said they had engaged a specialist to look into the matter and the truck driver was still hospitalised at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals awaiting results of more tests.