WHO to determine if Monkeypox should be declared ‘Emergency of International Concern’

A magnified image of a section of skin tissue, harvested from a lesion on the skin of a monkey, that had been infected with monkeypox virus. (Photo via CDC)
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(United Nations News) The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) announced on Tuesday that the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee has been convened due to the spread of the Monkeypox virus to 32 non-endemic countries.

The experts will meet on June 23 to assess whether the continuing outbreak represents a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, the highest level of global alert, which currently applies only to the COVID-19 pandemic and polio.

So far this year, more than 1,600 confirmed cases and almost 1,500 suspected cases of Monkeypox have been reported to WHO, across 39 countries – including seven countries where monkeypox has been detected for years, and 32 newly-affected nations.

At least 72 deaths have been reported from previously affected countries. No deaths have been registered so far from the newly affected countries, but the agency is seeking to verify news reports of a related death in Brazil.

“The global outbreak of Monkeypox is clearly unusual and concerning”, said WHO director Tedros Adhanom Gebreyesus, calling to step up the response and international coordination.

Read more at: United Nations News

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