UAE detects first case of monkeypox

Virus was detected in a 29-year-old visitor

By A Staff Reporter

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Published: Tue 24 May 2022, 7:19 PM

Last updated: Tue 24 May 2022, 10:31 PM

The UAE has reported its first case of viral zoonotic disease monkeypox. The Ministry of Health and Prevention said the virus was detected in a 29-year-old visitor from West Africa.

She is currently receiving the required medical care in the country.

The ministry has reassured residents that it is following all due safety measures, including investigation, contact tracing and follow-up.

The case was detected as part of the ministry’s early monitoring system that was activated when monkeypox cases were reported in multiple countries around the world.

The MoHAP has been “closely monitoring” the spread of monkeypox worldwide and said it had “intensified the local epidemiological surveillance”. All medical facilities in the country were told to report any suspected cases to prevent the local spread of the virus.

"We have put in place precise mechanisms for diagnosing suspected patients. The technical advisory team for pandemic control has also prepared a comprehensive guide for surveillance, early detection of the disease, management of clinically infected patients and precautionary measures," the ministry had said earlier.

The precise mechanism includes proactive steps to identify suspected cases, prevent its spread and ensure early treatment.

The ministry has called on residents not to promote or be misled by rumours and to take information from official sources only.

As of May 24, the World Health Organisation has registered more than 250 confirmed and suspected monkeypox infections.

UAE health authorities had earlier said that monkeypox occurs primarily in tropical rainforest areas of Central and West Africa and is occasionally exported to other regions.

The disease is transmitted to humans through close contact with an infected person or animal, or with material contaminated with the virus.

The virus is transmitted from one person to another by close contact with lesions, body fluids, respiratory droplets and contaminated materials such as bedding. Though rare and usually mild, monkeypox can still potentially cause severe illness.

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