WHO: 14,000 monkeypox cases worldwide, 5 deaths | CIDRAP

Though the outbreak is heavily concentrated in Europe, the five deaths have been reported in African nations. Some countries are beginning to record a decline in cases, but six countries this week reported their first cases.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said the country has 281 new confirmed monkeypox cases, bringing the national total to 2,137.

The UKHSA also said it has ordered 100,000 more doses of Bavarian Nordic’s monkeypox vaccine, in addition to the 30,000 the National Health System had previously procured. MSM are being offered the vaccine.

“Although most cases of monkeypox in the current outbreak are mild, severe illness can occur in some people, so it is important we use the available vaccine to reach groups where transmission is occurring,” said Gayatri Amirthalingam, MD, the head of immunization at UKHSA. “We continue to urge anyone with a rash with blisters, or any other monkeypox symptoms, to take a break from events, meeting with friends, or having sexual contact.”

The agency also updated its guidance on close contacts of cases, saying close contacts no longer need to isolate for 21 days, unless they begin to show symptoms. Close contacts should, however, avoid sex, kissing, and hugging until the 21 days has passed.

In other news, the United States has 136 more monkeypox cases, putting the total at 2,108. The number of affected jurisdictions remains at 45.

New York has the most cases, with 581, followed by California, with 267. Illinois has 200 cases.

Source: WHO: 14,000 monkeypox cases worldwide, 5 deaths | CIDRAP