Ebola is a viral disease that has been the focus of media attention since the recent large epidemics in the West African countries of Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.

Ebola is a highly contagious virus spread through body fluids such as mucus, saliva, or blood.


Ebola illness begins with flu-like symptoms, vomiting, and bloody diarrhoea up to ten days after contact with the virus. Bleeding will then occur through the mouth, nose, and eyes.


Travellers do not usually visit areas at risk of Ebola, however this disease may be suspected in anyone with a haemorrhagic illness and fever who has recently visited Africa. There is no specific treatment or vaccine for Ebola so avoiding travel to areas where Ebola is known to be occurring is paramount.

Stringent use of personal protective equipment is paramount when you are in an at risk area. Regularly washing hands with soap, avoiding touching your mouth, nose and eyes, and avoidance of human cases is also important.