Andhra Pradesh: 8-year-old boy shows monkeypox symptoms, hospitalized
Tensions rose in Andhra Pradesh's Guntur district on Saturday after a suspected monkeypox case was reported. An eight-year-old kid with monkeypox symptoms was taken to Government General Hospital (GGH). His test sample results are awaited. The youngster is from Odisha and reached Andhra Pradesh 15 days ago, according to health officials. However, a week later, the boy developed fever and rashes.
Why does this story matter?
With the World Health Organization (WHO) declaring monkeypox a "global public health emergency," many are now wondering if it will be the next epidemic India should worry about. The arrival of monkeypox has prompted health authorities to install surveillance systems and impose a high alert in several states, especially after India reported its fourth case: a 34-year-old Delhi man with no foreign travel history.
Official statement over the development
The GGH administration officer, Dr. Praveen Kumar stated, "The boy was diagnosed with rashes and symptoms of monkeypox by the local public health department. He was immediately shifted to the hospital and kept under isolation." "Samples have been collected and sent to NIV Pune. Results are awaited," he added. India has so far recorded four monkeypox cases, three from Kerala and one from Delhi.
Health Ministry orders airport surveillance
Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry has directed airports to inspect all travelers in light of the global monkeypox outbreak. To simplify health screening processes, the ministry recommended that personnel coordinate with departments such as immigration at international ports and airports. The WHO also declared the monkeypox epidemic a global public health emergency on Saturday (July 23), which is the highest level of alert.
What study related to monkeypox reveals?
According to research published last week in the New England Journal of Medicine, 98% of affected patients were homosexual or bisexual males, and 95% of infections were spread through sexual activity. Monkeypox, as per the experts, creates a blistering rash and is spread mostly through intimate physical contact, and the disease has not yet been classified as a sexually transmitted infection (STI).
Anyone can get the virus: WHO
WHO advises against assuming that the disease can just harm one group. It emphasized that the disease spreads through frequent skin-to-skin contact, as well as droplets or touching infected bedding or towels in a family environment. "Anyone exposed can get monkeypox," WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recently stated. He urged countries to "take action" to reduce the risk of transmission to other vulnerable groups.
Global status of the monkeypox outbreak
According to Ghebreyesus, 78 countries have now reported more than 18,000 cases of monkeypox cases to WHO which is "a matter of concern." Nearly 75% of these instances occurred in the Americas and 25% in Europe. Since May, there have been five deaths associated with the epidemic, and about 10% of individuals who have the illness require hospitalization to treat it, as per Ghebreyesus.