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WHO holds emergency meeting to discuss spread of monkeypox

The World Health Organization (WHO) is holding an emergency meeting to discuss the recent outbreak of monkeypox, a viral infection more common in West and Central Africa, after more than 100 cases were confirmed or suspected in Europe.

DISCLAIMER: The graphic images in this story may be distressing to some readers.

In what Germany has described as the largest outbreak ever seen in Europe, cases of monkeypox have been reported in at least nine countries – Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom – as well as in the United States. , Canada and Australia.

Spain reported 24 new cases on Friday, mostly in the Madrid region, where the regional government closed a sauna linked to the majority of infections.

A hospital in Israel was treating a man in his 30s who has symptoms consistent with the disease after his recent arrival from Western Europe.

First identified in monkeys, the disease is usually spread through close contact and has rarely spread outside of Africa, so this series of cases has raised concerns.

However, scientists do not expect the outbreak to develop into a pandemic like COVID-19, given that the virus does not spread as easily as SARS-CoV-2.

Monkeypox is a viral illness, with symptoms of fever and a bumpy rash of blisters that can burst.(Getty Images: CDC/Handout)

Monkeypox is usually a mild viral illness, characterized by symptoms of fever as well as a characteristic bumpy rash of blisters that may burst, leaving craters.

“This is the largest and most widespread outbreak of monkeypox ever seen in Europe,” said the medical service of the German armed forces, which detected its first case in the country on Friday.

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