FILE PHOTO: A health worker sprays a colleague with disinfectant during a training session for Congolese health workers to deal with Ebola virus in Kinshasa

KINSHASA - A hospital director says there are five new suspected cases of Ebola in Congo's northwestern town of Bikoro, where an outbreak of the often deadly hemorrhagic fever was declared this week.

Dr. Serge Ngalebato, Bikoro Hospital director, tells The Associated Press that two nurses who were in contact with patients are among the five suspected cases.

Already two Ebola cases have been confirmed in the region.

Ngalebato says that among the new suspected cases is a woman from Ikoko Impenge, the epicenter of the outbreak some 30 kilometers (18 miles) from Bikoro.

He says the new patients have been isolated. Health officials are trying to stabilize them as they show signs of fever, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain and intense fatigue.

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This is the ninth Ebola outbreak in Congo since 1976.

Associated Press