Going on Safari in East Africa during the Ebola Crisis – Dangerous?

Posted by on March 20, 2016

Should Ebola in West Africa affect your African Safari Travel Plans to East Africa?

Why not Going on Safari in East Africa during the Ebola Crisis is a mistake


 

Going on Safari in East Africa during the Ebola Crisis Here is the reality in November of 2015 -East Africa – Central Africa including Uganda and Rwanda are Ebola Free – East Africa is 5000 plus Kilometers away from the Ebola Outbreak in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. The Ebola Crisis is almost over – Guinea the last country with Ebola will soon be declared Ebola Free. It is all about western misperceptions about Africa.

A question to you – If there was an Ebola outbreak in Portland, Maine – would you cancel travel plans to Portland, Oregon?  Most likely not – Uganda – is about as far away from West Africa as if Portland, Oregon from Portland, Maine.


In 2014 I came across the following on Yahoo AnswersIs it a bad idea traveling to Uganda considering Ebola?”

There were 7 responses – two stated correctly that Uganda was Ebola Free while  others gave responses such as ” I wouldn’t go within 1000 miles of the continent” – “Personally, I wouldn’t make the trip anytime soon” – “Travel to Africa is always a bad idea.”

If  I asked many people around the world where Uganda or Rwanda was located in Africa they would have no idea.  That is one of the problems with Ebola and how it affect Travel to and in Africa.

Africa is not a Country – it is 53 plus Nations

Many people in the other parts of the world suffer under the delusion that Africa is a country and not a continent – meaning: when they hear thatGoing on Safari in East Africa during the Ebola Crisis there is an Ebola outbreak in West Africa that the whole continent is one country.  There are 53 recognized countries and a couple that are not .

Africa is a large continent and many of the larger nations in the world would fit into it as you can see by looking on the map on the right.

Just this morning I read a news-report where parents of volunteers at Heritage International School in Kampala were worried about their children contracting Ebola in Uganda.  Once again no understanding that Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea are over 5000 kilometers from East Africa including Rwanda and Uganda.

There are more cases presently in the USA than they are in the rest of Africa, but that news-account once again reiterated within me that Westerners, especially Americans are clueless about Africa and its geographical dimensions.

Senegal and Nigeria will be declared Ebola free where there was an Ebola incident or outbreak, both countries are located in West Africa near to the Ebola Outbreak.

Africa is much larger than Europe and most would not cancel travel plans to Paris if there was an Ebola Outbreak in Moscow.  The width of the USA is about the distance from Uganda to West Africa and if there was a deadly flu outbreak in Portland Maine one would not  cancel plans to visit Portland, Oregon. London in the UK is closer to the  Ebola Outbreak than is Uganda.

Most in the West and other parts of the world do not realize the vastness of Africa and that East Africa  is as far from the Ebola outbreak area as Europe or the America’s.

Ebola-Check-EntebbeUganda takes Measures to prevent an Ebola Outbreak here:

Travelers are being screened coming to Uganda at the point of entry.  There are no direct flight to or from West Africa to Uganda.  President Museveni  has warned citizens against shaking hands, no casual sex, no eating our closest cousins – the chimpanzees or any other primate, no eating of bats (West African Delicacy) and no eating of Bushmeat.

Ebola is one of the few countries in Africa that has effectively dealt with Ebola in the past, the last incident was in 2012 where nine people died and in two weeks the outbreak was dealt with. No interference with tourism, no cancellations.

Uganda has sent a team of doctors to West Africa and now Ebola Survivors here who would not be affected by Ebola have volunteered to go there and make a difference in the lives of those suffering from the disease since they now immune to new Ebola infections.

Safari countries such as Uganda and Rwanda which are thousands of miles from the Ebola outbreak of West Africa have enacted strict precautionary measures to prevent Ebola occurring within the respective countries – countries where there have been no Ebola cases in 2014 – all factors that bring the risk of infection to zero.

 All safari countries (East – Southern Africa) including Uganda and Rwanda have enacted strict precautionary measures and as there currently are no Ebola cases and the risk of infection is effectively zero.

Entebbe-Airport-ebolaThe danger of contracting Ebola while flying to or from Africa

You might be concerned about contracting Ebola while traveling to or from Africa. The reality is that such is an unlikely scenario.  If you are coming for a safari in Uganda or Rwanda or other parts of East Africa, you will normally fly from countries  where there is no Ebola outbreak such Amsterdam, Netherlands, London, UK, Brussels, Belgium, North American Countries, Australia or from a Mid-Eastern Country.

While on the plane one must keep in mind that a person with the Ebola Virus only becomes contagious once Ebola Symptoms set in and that it is only the bodily fluids that presently transmit the disease.  There is and has been no evidence of airborne transmission.  Most of those that have Ebola will be too ill to travel after the disease comes into full bloom.

Going on Safari in East Africa during the Ebola Crisis- even your flight plan will be thousands of miles away West Africa and you will never set foot in West Africa.

Ebola Factoids in a Nutshell

Fruit Bats are considered to bStop-Ebolae carrying Ebola in many cases though they are not affected by the disease,  Other animals are infected by coming into contact with their droppings and they in turn become infected and humans who may consume bushmeat, monkeys and bat, as is the custom with the rural population in West Africa where the outbreak now is.

The below facts were released the US Center of Disease Control

When an infection does occur in humans, the virus can be spread in several ways to others. Ebola is spread through direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes in, for example, the eyes, nose, or mouth) with

  • blood or body fluids (including but not limited to urine, saliva, sweat, feces, vomit, breast milk, and semen) of a person who is sick with Ebola
  • objects (like needles and syringes) that have been contaminated with the virus
  • infected animals
  • Ebola is not spread through the air or by water, or in general, by food. However, in West Africa, Ebola may be spread as a result of handling bushmeat (wild animals hunted for food) and contact with infected bats. There is no evidence that mosquitos or other insects can transmit Ebola virus. Only mammals (for example, humans, bats, monkeys, and apes) have shown the ability to become infected with and spread Ebola virus.

Why is Ebola spreading as rapidly as it is in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Nigeria and Senegal were able to contain it?  The three countries lack medical staff, proper equipment and infrastructure and the Ebola Outbreak moved from rural areas into the cities, especially the slums.  There was initially disbelief that Ebola was real and not governments wanting to control the people.  Cultural practices, religious beliefs, not trusting doctors and hospitals. People cared for the sick and buried the dead in traditional ways and the disease spread in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea – the three countries where Ebola is active on the African Continent.

Should Ebola in West Africa affect your African Safari Plans to East Africa?

We understand how you might feel, that is why in the past weeks we have created various pages in order to inform of the reality that the East African Union is Ebola Free and that includes Uganda and Rwanda.

Interest in Safari is presently at a reduced level since many people do not have the facts about the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa and the distance to countries to countries such as Uganda or Rwanda.  A Safari  in the Ebola Free Regions of the African Continent means that directly support many directly and indirectly. Airport Personnel, Hotel and Lodge Staff, Driver-Guides, Wildlife Parks, Gorilla Trekking Guides, even Porters, those selling their crafts and one could go on and on.

Going on Safari in East Africa during the Ebola Crisis – November 17 -2015 Reality – it is over – you are more likely to catch a deadly flu-virus in the USA than Ebola Virus in East Africa.

 

Enjoy Uganda – the Pearl of Africa and Rwanda – the Land of a Thousand Hills


 

 

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