WHO Raises Alarm Over Mpox Surge

United States—The World Health Organization (WHO) stated that the number of cases of mpox infection is still high in some African countries, and a critical strain of mpox has already appeared in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“It’s high time that there was a return focus on the recent upsurge in the incidence of mpox in Africa,” WHO’s technical lead on mpox, Rosamund Lewis, told Reuters.

Outbreak Details and Impact

The outbreak had roughly 8,600 cases and 410 deaths this year out of the mpox virus, the doctor in charge of Congo’s mpox control program, Cris Kacita, told Reuters.

During another meeting, John Claude Udahemuka from the University of Rwanda said that Congo is experiencing a new type of virus that originated in the South Kivu province, which is hard to access, and that this strain is very dangerous.

According to Udahemuka, however, more studies are needed in order to understand how the virus has been transmitted in South Kivu, but the virus continues to spread due to intercourse.

Global and Local Response

Its less severe form was seen across the world in 2022. WHO added that the global outbreak was primarily among men who have sexual relations with other men but also extended to others.

Antibodies were chiefly deployed to tackle pandemic across the world, however, they are not available in Congo as reported by Reuters.

Scale of the Outbreak

Kacita admitted the possibility of cases passing through borders since South Kivu is neighboring Rwanda and Burundi, as reported by Reuters.

Twenty-four of Congo’s 26 provinces have been impacted so far, making it the worst mpox outbreak in the country’s history.

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