He said today that the initial confirmed cases of monkeypox in the United Kingdom, the first country to alert the World Health Organization to the disease before possible infections were discovered in Spain, Portugal and the United States, were linked to a less serious type from West Africa. Health Organization (WHO).
In a follow-up report on the situation in the UK, which does not echo cases in other countries, the WHO indicated that the West African variant has a lethal potential of 1%, while the rate for Central Africa rises to 10%.
The Geneva-based organization warns that this disease, which is transmitted through droplets or direct contact with the skin or contaminated objects, poses an additional risk to children and pregnant women, who can transmit the disease to the fetus.
The World Health Organization notes that the traditional smallpox vaccine is highly effective against this disease, although since the disease was eradicated 40 years ago and immunization campaigns ended soon after, younger generations do not have this protection.
In its report, the agency recommended that anyone who becomes ill after returning from a monkeypox-infested area should notify medical services.
Travelers to risk areas and residents there should avoid contact with dead and sick animals, especially rodents (the main vehicles for transmitting this disease), marsupials or primates, adds the World Health Organization, which also advises against eating bushmeat or wild animals in those areas.
The World Health Organization is currently choosing not to recommend movement restrictions for the UK, and points to the importance of hand hygiene to reduce transmission of infectious diseases.
The first confirmed case in the UK was hospitalized on May 6, diagnosed on May 12, and three days later the World Health Organization was alerted that there were several cases in the country.
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