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More Ugandans may have Ebola virus

KAMPALA, Uganda -- Six more patients suspected of having Ebola have been admitted to a hospital days after investigators confirmed an outbreak of the highly infectious disease in a remote corner of western Uganda, a health official said yesterday.

Stephen Byaruhanga, health secretary of the Kibaale district, said possible cases of Ebola, at first concentrated in a single village, are now being reported in more villages.

In a national address, Uganda's president advised against unnecessary contact among people, saying suspected cases of Ebola should be reported immediately to health officials.

Officials of Uganda's Health Ministry and the World Health Organization announced Saturday that the virus had killed 14 Ugandans this month, after weeks of speculation about the cause of an illness that had some people fleeing their homes in the absence of reliable answers.

If the six cases are confirmed, it would mean 26 Ugandans have been infected.

The disease killed 224 people in 2000 and left hundreds more traumatized in northern Uganda. At least 42 people were killed in 2007. -- AP