WHO considers monkeypox a serious threat, must be contained immediately

Saturday, May 28, 2022 – 03:22 WIB

Monkeypox usually only spreads in Africa but has recently appeared in the United States and Europe. (Reuters: CDC/Brian WJ Mahy/Handout)

jpnn.com – The World Health Organization (WHO) urges countries to take immediate steps to stem the spread of monkeypox and share data on their vaccine stocks.

“We think if we put the right steps in place now, we might be able to tackle this easily,” said Sylvie Briand, WHO director for Global Infectious Hazard Preparedness, at the United Nations agency’s annual meeting.

Monkeypox is a mild viral infection that is endemic in parts of west and central Africa.

The disease spreads mainly through close contact and until recent outbreaks, was rarely seen in other parts of the world. That is why the recent emergence of cases in Europe, the United States and other regions has raised the alarm.

So far, there have been about 300 confirmed or suspected cases in about 20 countries, where the virus had not previously spread.

“For us, we think that the top priority right now is trying to contain this contagion in non-endemic countries,” Briand said at a technical briefing for member states.

The steps required include early detection and isolation of cases and contact tracing.

Member states should also share information on the stockpile of the first-generation smallpox vaccine which is also effective against monkeypox.

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