Liberian officials have confirmed the return of Ebola to the country after the death of a 17-year-old boy, who tested positive for the virus 48 days after the World Health Organization declared Liberia free of the Ebola virus on May 9, according to ABC News.
Over 8,000 people died from the disease after the virus spread across the country in 2014. While officials only confirmed the virus after the teenager had died, he was buried according to Ebola protocols to reduce risk of infection, according to the Liberian government.
“Although this was not the situation we were hoping for, this incident demonstrates[s] that our alert systems are working,” Liberia’s Minister of Health Dr. Bernice Dhan said in a statement. “The structures we have in place to strengthen our surveillance systems in Liberia allowed us to respond quickly. It is critical that the Liberian people remain vigilant and continue all prevention measures to stop the spread of Ebola.”
How the 17-year-old contracted the virus is not yet known, and it is currently under investigation.