Mon, 04 Jul 2022

JOHANNESBURG, May 23 (Xinhua) -- South Africa does not currently have any monkeypox cases but faced the risk of importing, said the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) on Monday.

"The implications for South Africa are that the risk of importation of monkeypox is a reality as lessons learned from COVID-19 have illustrated that outbreaks in another part of the world can fast become a global concern," said NICD Executive Director Adrian Puren.

The World Health Organization (WHO) does not recommend any travel restrictions as of yet, however, Puren said anyone entering South Africa and experiencing illness during travel or upon return from an endemic zone should inform a healthcare professional, taking into account recent travel, vaccination history, and contacting any known cases.

Dr. Jacqueline Weyer from the Special Viral Pathogens Division at the Centre for Emerging, Zoonotic and Parasitic Diseases declared that the NICD Sequencing Core Facility would be able to provide sequencing analysis rapidly in the event a case is identified so that it can be compared to the current outbreak strain.

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