The United Arab Emirates recorded its first case of the monkeypox virus on Tuesday, 24 May, as per the country’s health ministry.
The patient is a 29-year-old female from a West African country, and officials have not specified which country she is getting the required medical care, said the Ministry of Health and Prevention. The ministry statement also said that the patient was a visitor to the UAE.
During the weekend, officials asked hospitals and health facilities in the country to report immediately suspected cases for further investigation of the disease.
During the last few days, many European and North American nations, including France, Britain, and the US, have reported cases of the rare disease, which is common in parts of Africa.
However, medical authorities have stated that the risk of the disease spreading widely is relatively low. No deaths have been reported from the virus to date.
In a bulletin released on Wednesday, 25 May 2022, the World Health Organisation’s Eastern Mediterranean office stated the UAE’s region had witnessed its first case of the monkeypox virus, which includes Middle East Pakistan, North Africa, and Afghanistan.
As of 23 May, 131 confirmed cases had been reported worldwide from 18 countries, with an additional 106 suspected cases still being investigated.
WHO stated, “The situation is evolving, and the WHO expects there will be more cases of monkeypox identified as surveillance expands in non-endemic countries.”
What is Monkeypox?
It is a virus that comes from wild animals like rodents and primates and can occasionally jump on people. It belongs to the same virus family as smallpox. Most human cases have been found in West and Central Africa, and outbreaks are usually fewer.
The disease was identified by scientists in 1958 when they saw two outbreaks of a pox-like infection in research monkeys, which is why it was named Monkeypox.