A World Health Organization official said on Thursday that some 200 confirmed and more than 100 suspected cases of monkeypox had been detected outside of the nations where it usually spreads, urging countries to boost surveillance for the contagious disease.
The African countries of Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Nigeria are endemic for monkeypox, a minor viral infection.
Concerns have been raised following a recent outbreak in non-endemic nations. The global strain is expected to have a fatality rate of roughly 1%, despite the availability of effective vaccines and therapies.
During an online briefing, WHO senior epidemiologist Maria Van Kerkhove noted that cases have been found in more than 20 non-endemic countries so far, and that the agency expects the number to rise.
“More cases are likely to be discovered. We’re requesting that countries step up their surveillance This is an issue that can be managed. It will be difficult, but the situation in non-endemic countries is manageable.”