The Monkeypox Outbreak, and WHO’s Recent Declaration

The Monkeypox Outbreak, and WHO’s Recent Declaration.

Monkeypox (MPX) is a viral-zoonotic disease. It is transmitted from one person to another via close contact with lesions, body fluids, respiratory droplets, and contaminated materials (World Health Organization, 2022).

Since its first discovery in Africa in 1970, Benin, Cameroon, The Central African Republic, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Nigeria, The Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone, and South Sudan have all reported MPX cases (WHO, 2022). Over the past three years (2020-2022), the MPX outbreak in Africa has increased (Africa Center for Disease Control, 2022). Its resurgence, may be due to the eradication of smallpox and subsequent cessation of smallpox vaccination in the 1980s (WHO, 2022).

So far in 2022, over 21,000 cases have been reported in 78 countries globally (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 2022), and over 2,000 (confirmed and suspected cases) and 75 deaths have been reported in 11 African Union member states, with a case fatality ratio (CFR) of 3.7% (African CDC, 2022). These member states account for approximately 12% of all reported cases with the highest case fatality rate (African CDC, 2022).

The World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General, on the 23rd of July, 2022 declared the monkeypox (MPX) outbreak as “a global public health emergency of international concern” (PHEIC) (WHO, 2022).
What are your thoughts on the current global monkeypox situation?