Active surveillance has been instituted in the affected community, with no new cases identified to date. Thirteen close contacts to the index case are being monitored. None have developed any febrile illness and/or skin lesions since the last exposure. The contacts will continue to be monitored for an additional 17 days (which is twice the usual incubation period for the monkey pox virus).
Monkey pox is a rare viral disease that occurs primarily in the rainforest areas of Central and West Africa. It is transmitted to people mainly from infected animals, including squirrels, rats, mice and primates. The monkey pox virus is not highly infectious between humans.
The symptoms of monkey pox can usually be treated with supportive care. Typically, case fatality in monkey pox outbreaks has been between 1% and 10%, with most deaths occurring in younger age groups.
The Ministry of Health and Sanitation with support from WHO, CDC and other partners continues to closely monitor the situation, whilst undertaking intensive social mobilization in the affected community to promote early health care seeking behaviour and preventive measures. Preventive measures include avoiding bush meat and practicing good hand washing with soap and water.
The public is hereby advised to abstain from trapping and eating bush meat, especially rodents such as squirrels and rats which can be vectors for the monkey pox virus.
Healthcare workers have been informed of the situation and are on alert to provide the necessary care and support to the public or any sick person.