WHO Declares Public Health Emergency for Monkeypox Virus

At the meeting on 23th July, World Health Organization Emergency Committee declared Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) regarding the cases of monkeypox seen in many countries.

The Director – General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced that more than 14.000 thousand cases from 72 countries are reported. In the same statement Dr. Tedros announced that 5 deaths have occured so far as a result of monkeypox outbreak,  also added “The committee members did not reach a consensus regarding their advice on determination of a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) for this event.”

Dr. Tedros announced that it has been declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC), considering the complexities and uncertainties associated with this public health event.

About the monkeypox virus

Monkeypox virus which is a viral zoonosis (a virus transmitted from animals to humans); clinically, less severe and less fatal variant of smallpox.

Monkeypox virus, which was first encountered in people who living in a rural area in 1970’s was known as an endemic disease that concerns only West and Central Africa with it seen in the USA in 2003, first came to force for the first time in a country that is not endemic for the virus. After 19 years, on May 4, 2022, the first monkeypox case was detected in London, a month later, it became a global problem with its spread to 30 countries.

According to the current CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) datas, 21.148 cases were recorded in 78 countries, with the case detected in Turkey on 30 June 2022.

Autherities state that there is no treatment method for the monkeypox virus, which is heavily on the agenda of the World Health Organization (WHO), and at the same time, intense efforts are required to prevent the spread of the virus. While this is the case, experts consider the most effective method to prevent the spread of the disease is to make an accurate and high-confidence diagnosis at an early stage. Many countries, including Belgium and the United Kingdom, recommend to be home quarantined for people who have the virus. In addition, authorities in various countries want to prevent the spread of the monkeypox virus by isolating the people who has the viruse from the people who are not having the virus.

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