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Travel health information for people travelling abroad from the UK

Monkeypox in Central African Republic (Update)

14 Oct 2016

 

 

On the 13 October 2016 the World Health Organisation (WHO)Link reported on the outbreak of Monkeypox in Central African Republic.

A total of 26 suspected monkeypox cases have been admitted at Ira Banda health centre between 4 September 2016 to 7 October 2016, of these 3 have been laboratory confirmed.

In response disease surveillance is being strengthened, public awareness of monkeypox is being raised, healthcare workers are being trained in use of personal protective equipment, two isolation units for case management are being installed and patients with monkeypox are being provided with free care.

Advice for Travellers

Monkeypox virus infection is a low risk for most travellers as it occurs most commonly in remote, rural, rainforest villages. Monkeypox is a sporadic zoonotic infection similar to modified smallpox and is transmitted by the bite of an infected animal or by handling the animal’s blood, body fluids or lesions.

Animals include monkeys, squirrels, rats, mice and rabbits. Infection can also be transmitted by close contact with an infected person via respiratory droplets. There is no specific treatment and prevention is by avoiding contact with infected animals and individuals.