No need for mass vaccination against monkeypox – WHO

(ORDO NEWS) — Meanwhile, the total number of cases in the UK alone has reached 106.

There is no need for mass vaccination against monkeypox, but contact tracing and isolation are still needed to contain the outbreak, Rosamund Lewis, head of the World Health Organization’s smallpox department, said Friday.

At a briefing in Geneva, Lewis said that, according to the latest WHO recommendations, only those people who work professionally with viruses, i.e. people who work with viruses, may need additional protection.

laboratory workers, healthcare workers and first responders. Smallpox control measures, including vaccines, are believed to be effective against monkeypox.

“While we have come to the conclusion that there is no need for mass vaccination, there is no need for large-scale immunization campaigns,” Lewis said.

However, she explained, since the disease is transmitted mainly through close physical contact, skin-to-skin contact and face-to-face contact, “contact tracing, investigation and isolation remain the main means of control.”

The WHO expert stressed that it is “critical” to take the isolation of contact persons very seriously.

Meanwhile, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said on Friday that 16 new cases of monkeypox had been identified in the last 24 hours, bringing the total number of cases in the UK to 106. This makes the UK the country with the highest number of cases. diseases in Europe.

“The risk to the UK population remains low, but we ask people to be alert for any new rashes or lesions that look like spots, sores or blisters on any part of the body,” the agency said.

The UKHSA said it had purchased more than 20,000 doses of a smallpox vaccine called Imvanex, which is offered to close contacts of monkeypox patients.

Earlier this week, Albert Burla, CEO of Pfizer – the company behind one of the most widely used Covid vaccines – said a smallpox outbreak is very unlikely to turn into a pandemic because the virus is not particularly transmissible.

We remain calm and are monitoring the situation, but I think Covid remains the real problem right now,” he told Sky News.

Dozens of cases of monkeypox have been identified in the United States, Canada, Australia and Europe, a disease that leaves characteristic pustules on the skin but is rarely fatal.

The WHO has previously warned that a wave of monkeypox cases should be expected in Europe in the coming months. She also noted that the current spread of the virus is “atypical”, as it was previously distributed mainly in central and western Africa.

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