Wednesday, 6 July, 2022

Govt keeps eye on monkeypox situation

The government has kept a close eye on the global monkeypox situation, directing all port authorities in the country to remain vigilant in the face of the disease, which has already spread to a dozen countries.

"We have kept an eye on the spread of the monkeypox. All port authorities have already been asked verbally to follow extra precautionary measures," Dr. Md. Nazmul Islam, director of the the Disease Control unit of Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), told journalists on Saturday.

He also said hospitals have been asked to keep patients in isolation if anyone is found with symptoms of the monkeypox.

Nazmul Islam also asked everyone not to be worried about the disease. The World Health Organisation (WHO) said its partners are working to better understand the extent and cause of an outbreak of monkeypox.  

The virus-borne disease is endemic in some animal populations in a number of countries, causing outbreaks among locals and visitors on occasion, but recent outbreaks have been reported in 11 non-endemic countries so far, raising concerns among people all over the world.

So far, 80 cases have been confirmed, with another 50 under investigation. As surveillance expands, more cases are likely to be reported.

WHO is working with both affected and non-affected countries to expand disease surveillance in order to identify and support people who may be affected, as well as provide advice on how to manage the disease.

Monkeypox and COVID-19 spread in different ways. WHO advises people to stay informed about the extent of the outbreak in their community, the disease's symptoms, and how to prevent it from reliable sources like national health authorities.

As the disease spreads through close contact, the response should focus on the people affected and their close contacts.

People who have close contact with an infected person are more vulnerable. Healthcare providers, family members, and sex partners are advised to stay cautious.

It is never acceptable to stigmatise groups of people because of a disease. It can be a roadblock to ending an outbreak because it may discourage people from seeking medical help, resulting in undetected spread.