1,000 cases reported worldwide, WHO fears virus will take hold in non-endemic countries

The director general of the organization encourages countries to strengthen health surveillance in order to “identify all cases and contact cases to control this outbreak and prevent contagion”.

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The risk is “real” that the monkeypox virus is taking hold in non-endemic countries, with already 1,000 cases reported, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday (June 8). The director general of the organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, however assured in a press conference that “this scenario can be avoided”.

He therefore encouraged countries to increase their health surveillance measures to achieve “to identify all cases and contact cases to control this outbreak and prevent contagion”. “WHO is particularly concerned about the risks this virus poses to vulnerable groups, including children and pregnant women.”explained Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

The WHO has repeatedly emphasized that “the sudden and unexpected appearance” of virus in non-endemic countries suggests that it had been circulating for some time, but its transmission was going undetected. The vast majority of reported cases so far concern “men who have sex with men” but a few cases of community transmission, including among women, have been reported.

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