Monkeypox Symptoms Alert Risk South-East Asia WHO Regional Director Poonam Khetrapal Singh Physical Contact Global Health Emergency

New Delhi: The World Health Organisation (WHO) is regularly reviewing available data with its laboratory and other expert groups after Monkeypox cases are being reported from multiple countries, said Dr. PK Singh, Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia Region on Monday. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the current monkeypox epidemic a global health emergency on July 23.  “The transmission of monkeypox appears to be occurring primarily through close physical contact, including sexual contact. Transmission can also occur from contaminated materials such as linens, bedding, electronics, clothing, that have infectious skin particles,” she said. 

Earlier, Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh said that “monkeypox has been spreading rapidly and to many countries that have not seen it before, which is a matter of great concern”. She added that with cases concentrated among men who have sex with men, it is possible to curtail further spread of the disease with focused efforts among at-risk populations. 

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a media briefing last week that for the moment, monkeypox is an “outbreak that is concentrated among men who have sex with men”. 

For the second time in two years, the World Health Organization (WHO) has had to declare a global emergency. This time the reason for this is monkeypox, which has spread to more than 70 countries in a few weeks and has infected thousands of people. 

Also Read: EXPLAINED: Is Monkeypox A Sexually Transmitted Disease? Know What Experts Say

WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Saturday over-ruled a panel of advisors that could not reach a consensus, and declared Monkeypox a global health emergency. The term is currently only used by the WHO for two other diseases, Covid-19 and polio.

WHO has declared an infection or disease a global health emergency for the seventh time since 2009. This is the strongest call to action this agency can take. Earlier in 2020, the WHO declared Covid-19 a global health emergency.

There are more than 16,000 cases of monkeypox outside Africa, nearly five times the number at the time of the advisory meeting in June. While the countries of Europe have been the most affected, cases have also been reported in America, Canada, Australia, Nigeria, Israel, Brazil, Mexico and India. The infection has spread to more than 70 countries in total.

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