World, Health

Over 6,000 monkeypox cases, 3 deaths confirmed globally: WHO

World Health Organization records 77% increase in monkeypox cases since June 27

Peter Kenny   | 07.07.2022
Over 6,000 monkeypox cases, 3 deaths confirmed globally: WHO People lined up outside of Department of Health & Mental Hygiene clinic on June 23, 2022 in New York City, United States as NYC makes vaccines available to residents possibly exposed to monkeypox. ( Tayfun Coskun - Anadolu Agency )

GENEVA

The World Health Organization on Thursday said it has recorded a total of 6,027 confirmed cases of monkeypox and three related deaths since the beginning of the year in all five of its global areas across 59 countries or territories.

Since June 27, when the previous "disease outbreak news" was published, 2,614 new cases -- a 77% rise -- have been recorded, the global health agency said in a statement.

Two new deaths have been reported, with nine more countries or areas reporting cases.

WHO said it is the first time that the local transmission of monkeypox has been reported in the newly affected countries in Africa and globally, without epidemiological links to places in West or Central Africa that previously reported monkeypox cases.

The world health body noted that the outbreak continues to primarily affect men who have sex with men, suggesting no signal of sustained transmission beyond these networks, for now.

WHO Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus told journalists on Wednesday that he continues to be concerned by the scale and spread of the monkeypox virus.

"Testing remains a challenge, and it's highly probable that there are a significant number of cases not being picked up," said Tedros.

"Europe is the current epicenter of the outbreak, recording more than 80% of cases globally."

WHO said that in Africa, cases are appearing in countries not previously affected.

"My teams are following the data closely," Tedros stressed.

"I plan to reconvene the emergency committee on the current epidemiology and evolution of the outbreak and implementation of counter measures."

At a June 27 meeting, the emergency committee said the monkeypox outbreak was not yet a global health emergency.

WHO said it is working with countries and vaccine manufacturers to coordinate vaccine sharing, which is currently scarce and needs to be accessible to people at high risk.

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