Confirmed cases have been identified in Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States – which counted between one and five confirmed cases of monkeypox on Saturday. This is reported by the World Health Organization.
“The situation is evolving and WHO expects more cases of monkeypox to be identified as surveillance expands in non-endemic countries,” the press release said.
dr. Ashish Jha, the White House’s Covid-19 response coordinator, told ABC he wouldn’t be surprised if the United States sees “a few” cases of monkeypox in the coming days.
“But I feel like it’s a virus that we understand, we have vaccines for it, we have treatments for it, and it spreads very differently from SARS-CoV-2” – the virus that causes Covid-19, Jha told ABC’s Martha. Raditz on Sunday.
“It’s not as contagious as Covid. So I’m confident we can put our arms around it,” Jha said. “But we will be watching this closely and using the tools we have to make sure we can continue to prevent further spread and continue to care. infected people.”
Health experts say close contact with an infected person is necessary to spread the monkeypox virus.
The infection can develop after exposure to “broken skin, mucous membranes, respiratory droplets, infected bodily fluids or even contact with contaminated laundry,” said Neil Mabbott, personal director of immunopathology at the school. veterinarian from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.
While experts say monkeypox isn’t as contagious as Covid-19, President Joe Biden has said everyone should be worried about the spread of monkeypox – even as scientists work to learn more about the recent epidemic.
“They haven’t told me how high the exposure is yet, but it’s something everyone should feel,” Biden told a CNN reporter as he left South Korea on Sunday. .
“We’re working hard to figure out what we’re doing and what vaccine, if any, might be available,” Biden said. “It is a concern because if it is published there will be a consequence. That’s all they told me.
CNN previously reported that the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was evaluating whether the smallpox vaccine should be offered to healthcare professionals treating monkeypox patients and others at ‘high risk’ of exposure. at monkeypox.
Smallpox virus and monkeypox virus are somewhat related, as both belong to the genus Orthomyxvirus – belonging to the scientific family of “pox” viruses. Therefore, some vaccines given to prevent smallpox have also been shown to prevent monkeypox.
Early symptoms of monkeypox are usually flu-like, such as fever, chills, fatigue, headache, and muscle weakness.
“The feature that distinguishes monkeypox from smallpox is the development of enlarged lymph nodes,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The painful, raised pox is pearly and fluid-filled, often surrounded by red circles. The CDC said the lesions eventually peel off and disappear after two to three weeks.
“We have some scientific concern about what we’re seeing because this is a very unusual situation,” McCuston told CNN on Thursday.
“We don’t see it in the United States or Europe – and the number of reported cases is definitely outside the normal range of what we’re seeing,” McCuston said.
A senior British health official told the BBC on Sunday that people should be aware of monkeypox, but the risk to the general public “remains very low at this time”.
“I think people should be wary of that,” said Susan Hopkins, chief medical adviser to the UK’s Health Security Agency.
“We really want the doctors to be aware of this and send the test if they are concerned.”
Based on reports from Africa, the Occupational Health and Safety Services Agency (UKHSA) knows that some people are “at higher risk of serious illness, particularly immunocompromised people or young children,” Hopkins said.
Although “there is no direct vaccine against monkeypox, we use some kind of smallpox vaccine or third generation smallpox vaccine that is safe for people who come into contact with case,” Hopkins said.
Sandee LaMotte, Jamie Gumbrecht, Keith Allen, Kevin Liptak, Jacqueline Howard and Martin Goillandeau contributed to this report.
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