The UAE has reported three new cases of viral zoonotic disease monkeypox. The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) urged all community members to follow appropriate preventive measures and take all precautions while travelling and to stay safer in large crowds and avoid risky behaviours.
"Monkeypox is a viral disease, but usually a self-limited one, if compared to Covid-19. It's mostly transmitted to humans through close contact with an infected person or animal, including bodily fluids, and respiratory droplets, or with material contaminated with the virus. It can also be passed to the baby in the womb," the Ministry said in a statement.
It also reassured all community members that the UAE health authorities are taking all necessary measures, including investigation, examination of contacts, and monitoring their health.
The UAE reported its first monkeypox case on May 24. The infection was identified in a 29-year-old visitor from West Africa.
The ministry affirmed that it is cooperating with other health authorities in implementing an epidemiological surveillance system, in accordance with the highest global practices, to ensure sustainable efficiency and community protection from communicable diseases, and rapid detection, as well as work to limit the spread of all diseases and viruses, including monkeypox.
"All health authorities in the country are committed to a unified national medical guide for dealing with Monkeypox-infected people and their contacts. This includes complete isolation of the infected in hospitals until they recover, while quarantining their close contacts for a period of no less than 21 days at home and monitoring their health condition, and enforcing their compliance with home isolation."
The Ministry called for obtaining information from official sources in the UAE, and for refraining from spreading rumours and false information, highlighting the importance of staying updated on relevant developments and guidelines issued by the UAE health authorities.
Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease that occurs primarily in tropical rainforest areas of Africa, and is occasionally exported to other regions.
Animal to human: Through direct contact with the blood, bodily fluids, cutaneous or mucosal lesions of an infected animal, or eating insufficiently cooked meat from an infected animal.
Human to human (rare): Through close contact with respiratory secretions, skin lesions of an infected person or contaminated objects.
The interval from the infection to the onset of symptoms is usually from 6-13 days but can range from 5-21 days.
Fever, exhaustion, lymphadenopathy, back and muscle aches, intense headaches and skin rash which usually begins after one to three days of fever