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EPA Adds Ebola to Emerging Viral Pathogen Policy

Nov 16, 2022

The World Health Organization (WHO) reported an outbreak of Ebola in Uganda that has taken the lives of 74 people and infected over 156 people since September 2022, becoming the second deadliest Ebola outbreak in the country’s history.

First discovered in 1976, Ebola was widely known during the 2014 – 2016 outbreak in West Africa, Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia. Today, it is spreading quickly across Uganda through the rare Sudan strain, which has prompted the WHO to update the country’s risk level from high to very high as there is no vaccine for this strain of the virus.

Ebola is transmitted through human-to-human transmission via direct contact with:

  • Blood or body fluids of a person who is sick with or has died from Ebola
  • Objects that have been contaminated with body fluids from a person sick with Ebola or the body of a person who died from Ebola

Last month, the United States restricted arrivals of travelers from Uganda to 5 airports to undergo screening for Ebola. Earlier this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued an alert to American health workers to be weary of patients who have traveled to Uganda in the last 3 weeks and show possible symptoms of Ebola, which include:

  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash
  • Symptoms of impaired kidney and liver function
  • Internal and external bleeding
  • Low white blood cell and platelet counts
  • Elevated liver enzymes

Due to how contagious and dangerous Ebola is, the EPA has added Ebola to its emerging viral pathogen policy. A virus is added to this policy when there is no EPA-approved protocol in place. Under this policy, there are 10 Betco disinfectant products recommended by the EPA’s List Q Disinfectants for Emerging Viral Pathogens for use against Ebola.

These disinfectants have demonstrated efficacy against viruses similar to Ebola on hard, non-porous surfaces. Therefore, they can be used against the Ebola virus when used per the directions on the product label.

In addition to cleaning and disinfecting, the CDC recommends the following prevention methods:
  • Avoiding contact with blood and bodily fluids of people who are sick
  • Avoid contact with items that may have encountered an infected person’s blood or body fluids
  • After returning from an area experiencing an Ebola outbreak, people should monitor their health for 21 days and seek medical care immediately if they develop symptoms

For more information about Ebola, click here. To get in touch with a Betco representative, click here.

*Disinfectant dilution only (3.5 oz/5-gal water)