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CDC Issues Marburg Virus Disease Advisory

An April 6 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) health advisory alerts U.S. health care providers to the risk of imported cases of Marburg Virus Disease (MVD), a rare but highly fatal viral hemorrhagic fever, and provides recommendations for virus identification and biosafety measures.

In the advisory, CDC informs clinicians and public health departments about two confirmed MVD outbreaks in Equatorial Guinea and Tanzania. Currently, there is no evidence that these outbreaks are linked.

While the risk of MVD in the United States is low, CDC recommends that clinicians systematically assess patients for the possibility of viral hemorrhagic fevers, including MVD or Ebola disease, through a triage and evaluation process, including a detailed travel history.

To prevent MVD transmissions in hospital settings, CDC recommends a combination of infection prevention and control measures, including personal protective equipment, patient placement, and patient care considerations.

CDC urges clinicians who suspect MVD to:

  • Use the 24-hour Epi-On-Call contact list to contact the appropriate jurisdictional health department immediately, and follow jurisdictional patient assessment protocols.
  • Isolate patients in a private room with a private bathroom or covered bedside toilet.
  • Conduct routine laboratory testing to monitor the patient’s clinical status and diagnostic testing for other potential causes of the patient’s illness while Marburg virus testing is underway.
  • Follow the same infection prevention and control measures as recommended for Ebola disease.

Contact Senior Director of Policy Erin O’Malley at eomalley@essentialhospitals.org or 202.585.0127 with questions.

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About the Author

Faridat Animashaun is a policy analyst at America's Essential Hospitals.

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