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WHO says monkeypox ‘containable’ as more govts start limited vaccinations -Breaking


© Reuters. In this illustration from May 23, 2022, you can see test tubes that have been labelled as “Monkeypox positive”. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration


Jennifer Rigby, Mrinalika Raj

GENEVA, (Reuters) – Monkeypox outbreaks outside Africa can be controlled, according to the World Health Organization. More governments have announced that they will launch limited vaccines in an effort to counter rising cases of the disease.

This was after 237 confirmed and suspected cases were investigated by authorities in 19 countries.

Officials at WHO expect this number to rise, however, most infections have been mild.

Given that the virus is not as easy to spread as SARS, scientists don’t expect it will become a pandemic such as COVID-19.

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A mild virus infection, monkeypox can be found in some parts of central and west Africa.

It is spread mainly by close contact. However, it has been rare to see cases in other regions of the world until now. Most cases have been found in Europe. [nL2N2XE097]

The English reported 14 additional cases Tuesday. This brings the total number of infections to 70, which is up from May 7. In addition, the United Arab Emirates, Czech Republic, and Malta registered their first infected patients.

Sylvie Brind, WHO Director for Global Infectious Hazard Preparedness said that “We urge you all to intensify the surveillance of monkeypox in order to understand its transmission patterns and where they are going.”

She acknowledged that the epidemic was not normal, but she said it was manageable.

She said that there are vaccines and treatment options for monkeypox. This calls for global cooperation, appropriate containment, increased research and more collaboration.

Speaking at the World Health Assembly, Geneva she stated that “Let’s not make an mountain out of something we have.”

WHO continues to work on new guidelines for countries regarding vaccination strategies. Further meetings are being held to provide more support to member states by providing them with advice and guidance on how to deal with the problem. [nL2N2XF2I1]


Protection measures are being taken by some countries to guard against the spread of the virus to people infected.

France’s health authorities recommended on Tuesday that anyone who has come into contact with someone with monkeypox confirmed and any health workers exposed should be immunized.

The Danish Health Authority stated that Denmark also provided vaccines for close relatives of people infected by the virus. There have been two confirmed cases.

Bavarian Nordic is the manufacturer of the vaccine currently being used. The vaccine is known as Jynneos USA, where it has been approved to be used against both smallpox & monkeypox. The drug is approved in Europe for use against smallpox. It has also been given off-label to treat monkeypox cases.

Germany ordered the deployment of 40,000 doses on infected people in Germany in preparation for an eventuality.

Officials said that they are relying on precautionary measures for the moment.

Karl Lauterbach, the Health Minister, stated that the epidemic could be controlled with prompt intervention. He also said it did not indicate the onset of a new pandemic. A senior WHO official provided similar advice on Monday.

On Monday, U.S. officials prepared to release some Jynneos dosages. British officials were first to offer vaccines to healthcare professionals and other people who might have contracted monkeypox in the UK.


These moves are made as scientists try to learn more about transmission methods and those most at risk.

Briand reiterated WHO’s opinion that the virus is unlikely to have mutated, however, he said that transmission may be driven by human behavior changes as well as socializing as COVID-19 restrictions worldwide are removed. [nL2N2XF121]

Experts in health monitor for mutations that may make the virus more transmissible, or even deadly.

Briand stated that many of these cases were reported by men who had sex with other men. He also stressed the importance to avoid sexual transmission.

The symptoms include fever, rash and bumpy appearance. The current epidemic is caused by the West African monkeypox strain. It has an estimated mortality rate of 1%.

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