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WHO is considering declaring monkeypox a global health emergency | Health

Maria Chen-AP Medical Writing

London (AP) — Some when the World Health Organization convenes an emergency committee on Thursday to consider whether the spiral outbreak of monkeypox justifies being declared a pandemic. Experts say WHO’s decision to act only after a disease spilled in the west can establish grotesque inequality, which happens between rich and poor countries during the coronavirus pandemic. I did.

Declaring monkeypox as a global emergency means that the United Nations health agency considers the outbreak an “abnormal event” and risks spreading the disease across more borders. It also gives monkeypox the same distinction as the COVID-19 pandemic and makes ongoing efforts to eradicate polio.

Many scientists suspect that such a declaration may help curb the epidemic, as developed countries recording the latest cases are already moving quickly to close it.

Last week, WHO Secretary-General Tedros Adhanomgebreyes explained recently. Monkeypox Outbreaks identified as “abnormal and concerned” in more than 40 countries, primarily in Europe. Monkeypox has sickened people in Central and West Africa for decades. There, one version of the disease kills up to 10% of people. So far, no deaths have been reported in trans-African epidemics.

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“If WHO was really worried about the spread of monkeypox, it would have been possible to convene an emergency committee a few years ago when monkeypox recurred in Nigeria. Why did hundreds of cases suddenly occur? I didn’t know, “said Oyewale Tomori, a Nigerian virologist. WHO Advisory Group. “It’s a little strange that WHO called their experts only when the illness appeared in a white country,” he said.

Until last month, monkeypox did not cause large-scale outbreaks across Africa.Scientists haven’t found a major genetic change in the virus, and WHO’s key adviser said last month that a surge in cases in Europe was probably Sexual activity Between gay and bisexual men in two rave in Spain and Belgium.

To date, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Confirmed More than 3,300 monkeypox cases occur in 42 countries where the virus is not normally found. Over 80% of cases are in Europe. in the meantime, Africa Already this year, more than 1,400 cases have been seen, including 62 deaths.

David Fiddler, Senior Fellow of Global Health, Council on Foreign Relations, said WHO’s new attention to monkeypox as it spreads across Africa is between the rich and the poor as seen during COVID-19. He said it could inadvertently exacerbate the disparity.

“There may be good reason why WHO issued a warning only when monkeypox spread to rich countries, but to poor countries it looks like a double standard,” Fidler said. I did. He said that the global community is still struggling to ensure that the world’s poor are vaccinated against the coronavirus, and given competing priorities like malaria and HIV, Africans. Said it was unclear if he wanted a monkeypox vaccine.

“Unless the African government specifically demands a vaccine, it may be a bit of a favor to send the vaccine, as it is in the Western interest to block the export of monkeypox,” Fidler said.

WHO also Vaccine sharing mechanism To help affected countries where doses can be seen going to rich countries like the United Kingdom with the largest monkeypox outbreaks beyond Africa — and Recently expanded Vaccine use.

To date, the majority of cases in Europe have been gay or bisexual men, or other men who have sex with men, but scientists have found that those who are in close contact with the infected, or theirs. Clothes and bed sheets warn of the risk of infection, regardless of sexual orientation. People with monkeypox often experience symptoms such as fever, body aches, and rashes. Most recover within a few weeks without the need for medical care.

Even if WHO announces that monkeypox is a global emergency, it is unclear what impact it could have.

In January 2020, WHO declared COVID-19 an international emergency. But until March, when many other authorities described it as a pandemic a few weeks later, few countries were paying attention. WHO was later accused of multiple failures throughout the pandemic. Some experts say it may be encouraging a quick response to monkeypox.

“After COVID, WHO does not want to be the last person to declare monkeypox an emergency,” said Amanda Glassman, Executive Vice President, Center for Global Development. “This may not go up to the level of an emergency like COVID, but it is still a public health emergency that needs to be addressed.”

Salim Abdool Karim, an epidemiologist and vice-president of the University of Kwazur Natal in South Africa, said WHO and others should make more efforts to stop monkeypox in Africa and elsewhere, but a global emergency. I was not convinced that the declaration would be useful.

“There is a misguided idea that Africa is this poor and helpless continent, but in reality we know how to deal with the epidemic,” said Abdul Karim. He said stopping the outbreak ultimately depends on surveillance, patient isolation, and public education.

“Maybe we need a vaccine in Europe to stop monkeypox, but here we were able to control it in a very simple way,” he said.

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WHO is considering declaring monkeypox a global health emergency | Health

Source link WHO is considering declaring monkeypox a global health emergency | Health

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