On 23 July, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the Monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency of international concern even though the committee failed to reach a consensus. Seventy-four countries have reported outbreaks of the viral disease – 68 of which have not historically reported Monkeypox cases – with over 16,800 confirmed cases. Issuing a Public Health Emergency of International Concern enhances coordination and sharing of resources and information among nations.
Incubation: The incubation period (time from infection to symptoms) is usually 7-14 days but can range from 5-21 days and, according to experts, individuals can be infectious from 1 day before a rash appears up to four weeks after the onset of symptoms or until all skin lesions have formed scabs and no other symptoms are present.
Transmission: The virus can be spread from person to person, with an estimated transmission rate from 3.3-30%. The virus may be transmitted by:
• Respiratory droplets during direct and prolonged face-to-face contact
• Direct contact with body fluids of an infected person or with virus-contaminated objects, such as bedding or clothing.
• Swollen lymph nodes are common.
• Initially, flu-like symptoms may occur including, fever, headache, muscle aches, backache, swollen lymph nodes, chills, and fatigue.
• Next a rash, characterized by macules and papules, develops 1 to 10 days later;
o the macules and papules develop into vesicles and pustules and, in the final stage, form scabs.
o The skin lesions usually occur on the extremities but may also occur on the head and torso.
Mitigating Factors to Apply:
• Monitor local authorities for updates
• Enroll in a Safe Traveler program to receive warnings from your preferred embassy
• Avoid exposure to those presenting the above symptoms
• Avoid contact with animals or humans that could harbor the virus (including sick or dead animals especially in areas where monkeypox occurs)
• Avoid contact with materials, such as bedding, that has been in contact with a sick animal or human
• Practice aggressive hygiene by washing hands with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
• Practice social distancing at the workplace and in public spaces
• Wash hands frequently with soap and water; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water is not available
• Seek medical care immediately if you experience symptoms and have recently traveled to an infected area; notify your healthcare provider of your recent travel
• Speak to a healthcare provider before travel if you are concerned
• Allow extra time for travel and prepare for delays caused by medical screenings if you are entering or leaving an area with known outbreaks
DISCLAIMER and Hold Harmless Disclaimer: LSDS™ gathers information from multiple sources and offers insight and perspective to travelers. Sources cannot be validated for accuracy in every instance. Travelers assume all risk associated with their travel and are responsible for the decisions associated with travel and for their own safety. Users of this reference document agree, to hold harmless LSDS™ (LLC) its employees and clients associated with any risk or injury incurred during travel.