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Health Ministry releases guidelines for management of Monkeypox. Details here

In the recent outbreak, over 200 monkeypox cases have been confirmed from more than 20 countries outside Africa

May 31, 2022 / 07:18 PM IST
Monkeypox causes fevers and skin lesions.

Monkeypox causes fevers and skin lesions.

The Union Health Ministry on May 31 released the guidelines for the management of monkeypox, a viral zoonotic disease that is hitting headlines internationally, even though no case of the disease has been confirmed in India yet.

As per the guidelines, a confirmed case means laboratory confirmation for monkeypox virus by detection of unique sequences of viral DNA either by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or sequencing.

There are no confirmed monkeypox cases in India yet. However, the country needs to be prepared in view of the increasing reports of cases in non-endemic countries, said the 23-page guidelines.

All the clinical specimens should be transported to the National Institute of Virology, Pune routed through the Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme (IDSP) network of the respective district or state, the Centre has said.

The other key parts in the guidelines include epidemiology of the disease including host, incubation period, period of communicability and mode of transmission; contact and case definitions; clinical features and its complication, diagnosis, case management, risk communication, guidance on Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) including use of personal protective equipment.

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The guidelines stress surveillance and rapid identification of new cases as the key public health measures for outbreak containment, mandating the need to reduce the risk of human-to-human transmission.

It also explains the IPC measures, IPC at home, patient isolation and ambulance transfer strategies, additional precautions that need to be taken and duration of isolation procedures.

As per the guidelines, contacts of suspected or confirmed cases should be monitored at least daily for the onset of signs or symptoms for a period of 21 days (from the last contact with a patient or their contaminated materials) during the infectious period.

Monkeypox has been reported as endemic in several other central and western African countries such as Cameroon, Central African Republic, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of the Congo, and Sierra Leone.

However, cases have been also reported in certain non-endemic countries like the USA, the United Kingdom, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Australia, Canada, Austria, Israel and Switzerland among others.

 
Sumi Sukanya Dutta
first published: May 31, 2022 06:55 pm
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