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World Health Organization does not believe monkeypox outbreak will be as bad as COVID-19

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Posted: Sunday, May 22, 2022. 9:01 pm CST.

By Benjamin Flowers: While the World Health Organization (WHO) recently called a meeting to discuss the monkeypox outbreak in Europe, experts feel that the situation will not reach pandemic levels like COVID-19, Reuters reports.

On Friday, May 20, the WHO’s Strategic and Technical Advisory Group on Infectious Hazards with Pandemic and Epidemic Potential (STAG-IH), which advises on infection risks that could pose a global health threat, met to discuss the monkeypox outbreak, after cases of the illness which is rarely detected outside of Africa, was confirmed in at least nine European countries. There were around 100 cases found in countries that include Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Cases of monkeypox have also been confirmed in the United States, Canada, and Australia.

Experts have determined that the illness is unlikely to be as bad as the COVID-19 situation because it does not spread as easily. Monkeypox is usually a mild viral illness, with the most common symptom being a distinct bumpy rash. Other symptoms include fever, headaches and skin rashes starting on the face and spreading to the rest of the body.

The virus reportedly does not spread easily between people, but transmission through contact with body fluids, monkeypox sores, items such as bedding or clothing that have been contaminated with fluids or sores, is possible. It can also be contracted through respiratory droplets following prolonged face-to-face contact.

Following the first reported case in the US, a health official with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health said that the likelihood of a major public threat was low.

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