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Government alert regarding monkeypox, guidelines issued amid increasing cases


New Delhi: Amidst increasing cases of monkeypox in some countries, a guideline has been issued by the government in this regard. In the guidelines, district surveillance units have been directed to treat even such a case as an outbreak and initiate detailed investigation through the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme. In the guidelines on management of monkeypox disease issued to the states and union territories, the health ministry has emphasized on surveillance and rapid detection of new cases.

In the guideline issued by the Ministry of Health, it has been said that India needs to be prepared in view of the increasing cases in other countries, even though no case of monkeypox virus has been reported in the country so far. The guidelines propose a surveillance strategy for early identification of cases and clusters of infections and sources of infection so as to isolate cases to prevent further spread.

Emphasis has been placed on clinical care, identification of contacts and protection of health workers. Monkeypox has been reported as an endemic disease in several Central and West African countries such as Cameroon, Central African Republic, Cte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of Congo and Sierra Leone. However, cases have also been reported in some non-endemic countries such as the US, UK, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Australia, Canada, Austria, Israel and Switzerland.

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