First monkeypox case in SA no cause for alarm: Joburg health MMC
Following confirmation of the first monkeypox case in SA on Thursday, residents of Johannesburg should remain calm and inform themselves about the facts around the illness.
This is the message from Johannesburg MMC for health and social development Ashley Sauls.
The National Institute for Communicable Diseases said the case involves a 30-year-old male living in Gauteng. He reported no recent travel history.
Sauls said around 3,000 people worldwide have contracted monkeypox since May this year. He said the current strain of the disease is not considered fatal and sufferers begin to experience symptoms within seven to 14 days of exposure.
“Anyone with monkeypox must be kept in isolation and anyone who finds they had contact with someone with monkeypox must be traced and isolated too.”
Sauls said the virus can be spread through close contact among people, and it need not be a contact of a sexual nature.
“However, this virus does not transmit easily and it is important that as a society we remain calm and do not react with the same level of panic as occurred at the start of the coronavirus epidemic in 2020.”
He said in Africa, most monkeypox cases have been documented among children under 15 years old.
“If you experience monkeypox symptoms such as a rash, swollen lymph nodes and flu-like symptoms, please try not to come into contact with anyone else and please ensure that you present yourself for testing and treatment.
“Most sufferers recover completely within two to four weeks, without needing hospital treatment.”
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