Costa Rica Remains On Alert for Possible Appearance of Monkeypox

    The World Health Organization (WHO) made an international declaration on monkeypox in non-endemic countries

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    The Costa Rican Ministry of Health reported this past Thursday that it is keeping public and private health services on alert to identify and notify possible cases of monkeypox.

    The authorities indicated in a press release that the Health Surveillance Directorate, together with an inter-institutional technical group, continues with the permanent analysis of the progress of the situation of this disease and the new information available that allows working on the guidelines for the surveillance.

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    A zoonotic disease

    Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease caused by monkeypox virus belonging to the orthopoxvirus genus of the Poxviridae family, which is transmitted mainly by respiratory droplets, by direct or indirect contact with blood, body fluids, skin lesions or mucous membranes of infected animals, detailed the Costa Rican Ministry of Health.

    Experts have explained that it can also be transmitted secondarily or from person to person by close contact with infected secretions from the respiratory tract or skin lesions of an infected person or with objects contaminated with the patient’s fluids or materials from the lesion.

    Symptoms, which can last two to four weeks, include fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, swollen lymph nodes, chills, and exhaustion. The incubation period for monkeypox is usually 7 to 14 days, but can range from 5 to 21 days.

    Reinforcing prevention and control measures

    According to the general recommendations of the WHO, it is important for the entire population to reinforce prevention and control measures for respiratory infectious diseases, such as frequent hand washing, cooking food properly, and avoiding close contact with people with symptoms.

    Data cited by the Costa Rican Ministry of Health reveals that until May 21, 2022, among the countries that have reported cases are Australia, Germany, Belgium, Canada, France, the United States, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Sweden, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

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