24th July 2024
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South Sudan on alert as DRC records monkeypox cases

Author: Michael Daniel | Published: Monday, June 24, 2024

Child manifesting symptoms of monkeypox disease|Courtesy| MoH

Western Equatoria Ministry of Health and partners have deployed a surveillance team to the border with DR Congo following the reported outbreak of monkeypox disease there.

Dr. Rose Obede, the state health ministry’s director general, said surveillance officers have been posted at the border in response to the mpox outbreak reported in May this year.

The US Center for Disease Control (CDC) said the vast tropical country has recorded more than 20,000 suspected mpox cases and about 1,000 deaths since January 2023.

CDC said the current outbreak is widespread in in 25 of the country’s 26 provinces although few have been confirmed in a laboratory testing.

Meanwhile, Dr. Obede said surveillance officers recently sent to Nzara County after a child reportedly manifested symptoms related to the viral disease.

The health official said the surveillance team dispatched to the area didn’t find the suspected case.

“For the concerns about monkeypox in our neighboring DR Congo, we heard about it and then we have our surveillance officers. They are now notified and we have trained many more,” she said.

“We have done refreshment training also last month for them to be vigilant and detect whatever comes. Up to now, we are okay and there has been nothing since we had about a (suspected case) of a small child in Ezra, but we went to see it but we didn’t get it.”

According to the World Health Organization, mpox is a viral illness caused by the monkeypox virus, a species of the genus Orthopoxvirus.

The Common symptoms of mpox are a skin rash or mucosal lesions which can last 2–4 weeks accompanied by fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, low energy, and swollen lymph nodes.

Mpox can be transmitted to humans through physical contact with someone infectious, with contaminated materials, or with infected animals.

Anyone can get mpox and it spreads from contact with infected:

  • persons, through touch, kissing, or sex
  • animals, when hunting, skinning, or cooking them
  • materials, such as contaminated sheets, clothes or needles
  • pregnant persons, who may pass the virus on to their unborn baby.

If you have mpox:

  • Tell anyone you have been close to recently
  • Stay at home until all scabs fall off and a new layer of skin forms
  • Cover lesions and wear a well-fitting mask when around other people
  • Avoid physical contact.

 

 

 

 

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