First in the Gulf, UAE records case of monkeypox

Abu Dhabi: The UAE Ministry of Health on Tuesday announced that it had detected the first case of monkeypox in the country, and the first in the Gulf states, the Emirates News Agency (WAM) reported.

The ministry said, in a statement, “The case belongs to a 29-year-old woman, a visitor to the country from West Africa, who is receiving the necessary medical care in the country.”

The ministry stressed that the health authorities in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are taking all necessary measures, including investigation, examination of contacts and follow-up.

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The ministry called on citizens to follow the developments and instructions issued by the official health authorities.

On May 22, the UAE Ministry of Health announced, in a statement, its readiness to deal with monkeypox, and to start early monitoring of it.

The ministry said that it is studying the situation and evaluating the risk of the epidemic locally, pointing to the issuance of a circular for medical staff working in the country to work on discovering cases and reporting them to the relevant health authorities.

The ministry has also developed mechanisms for laboratory diagnosis of suspected cases with the required speed, according to the same statement.

As of Tuesday, May 23, the World Health Organization said that the number of confirmed cases of monkeypox has reached 131 and there are 106 other suspected cases.

On May 7, 2022, WHO was informed of a confirmed case of monkeypox in an individual who travelled from the United Kingdom to Nigeria and subsequently returned to the United Kingdom. 

Available information indicates that human-to-human transmission occurs between people in close contact with cases who show symptoms.

Monkeypox is a usually mild infectious disease that is endemic in parts of West and Central Africa, and is a rare virus similar to human smallpox.

Symptoms of the disease include fever, headache, and a rash that begins on the face and spreads to the rest of the body. It spreads through close contact, so it can be contained relatively easily through measures such as self-isolation and personal hygiene.

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