Monkeypox – The New Global Health Emergency



“Zoonotics seem to be in the news for one or another reason of late. From Coronavirus (covid-19), Bird Flu (H5N1) and now Monkeypox.” - Anthony T Hinks, Author


How does Monkeypox spread?


Monkeypox does not spread like flu or Covid; it spreads via close personal contact, including during sexual encounters. So there, the panic pedal can be relaxed. But can we put our guard down totally? The answer is NO! This is a pox virus, that is found atypically in Europe and North Americas.


This virus is related to the smallpox virus which has been successfully eradicated through vaccinations in the 1980s.


Since early May 2022, Monkeypox cases have been reported from countries where it is not endemic, which is a cause for concern. As of 8th August 2022, there are 28,220 cases of which 27,875 cases are in countries alien to the virus. Read more about the stats here


How dangerous is Monkeypox?


Based on the studies, it is found that Monkeypox can just occasionally be deadly - for people with compromised immune systems and in places where there are poor healthcare services. However, it is a major health emergency.


How can Monkeypox be prevented?


Monkey pox, despite its name, is hosted in Rodents. In the past it spread through contact with humans with diseased lesions or through exhaled respiratory droplets during prolonged close contact. Then as mentioned before, it spreads human to human as well through close contact. As per World Health Organization (WHO), raising awareness of risk factors and educating people about the measures they can take to reduce exposure to the virus is the main prevention strategy for Monkeypox. Scientific studies are now underway to assess the feasibility and appropriateness of vaccination for the prevention and control of monkeypox.


Given the rapid rise in the cases, Monkeypox needs to be taken seriously. However, having said that it is much more easily controllable than Covid.


Monkey pox is not as transmissible as Covid.


It takes much longer for a Monkeypox infection to develop within an individual and to become transmissible.


Monkeypox may not be very transmissible before its visible rash highlights the need for quarantine, while Covid can be transmitted before symptoms emerge and even in asymptomatic cases.


Please read this page from World Health Organization (WHO) for more details and insights.


Would your “Pandemic Plan” designed for Covid-19, work for the Monkeypox should it (God forbid) become pandemic?


The answer is both ‘Yes’ and ‘No’. From the bird’s eye view, you can have the similar response plan, but not the same. At procedural levels, they drastically change because Monkeypox DOESN’T spread like flu.


Though Monkeypox is not as alarming as Covid, the virus can still mutate and is important to have a plan in place to counter its potential impact to your business. Contact us to find out how!


At Gorisco, our motto is 'Embedding Resilience' and we are committed to make the organizations and their workforce resilient. Reach out to us if you have any queries, clarifications or need any support on your initiatives.


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