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South Africa 8k8 online casinoon high alert after Mpox death case

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Test tubes labeled "Monkeypox virus positive and negative" are seen in this illustration taken May 23, 2022. [Photo/Agencies]

South Africa's health department on Wednesday announced plans to procure vaccines against the Mpox, virus formerly known as monkeypox after the country recorded its first confirmed death from the disease this week.

While addressing a media briefing, Joe Phaahla, South Africa's minister of health, said that five cases have been confirmed since May involving men aged between 30 and 39. However, none of the individuals were reported as having traveled abroad, suggesting the disease was being transmitted locally. He added that all five cases recorded in the country this year were classed as severe and required hospitalization.

"At the current moment, there is no registered treatment for Mpox in South Africa. However, the World Health Organization, or WHO, recommends the use of the Tecovirimat vaccine for the treatment of severe cases. We are trying to source vaccines from WHO member countries who have stockpiles that exceed their needs as well as from the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization," Phaahla said.

Close physical contact

Mpox is a viral infection which is transmitted through close physical contact. Its initial symptoms include headaches, fever, back pain, aching muscles and swellings which can develop into a rash. In 2022, WHO declared a public health emergency over an outbreak of Mpox. Despite lifting the public emergency last year, low levels of cases are still being reported in some countries.

"Although the World Health Organization has not recommended any travel restrictions, it is important for travelers to and from endemic countries to alert health officials on the situation to enable them to provide guidance for case detection and management," Phaahla said adding that one death is too many, especially from a preventable and manageable disease like Mpox.

Of the remaining four cases in South Africa, the health minister said that one patient has been discharged, one discharged for home isolation and two remain in hospital. He urged South Africans to help the government in curbing further spread of the infectious disease by having those with suspected symptoms, or who were in contact with known patients, present themselves at healthcare facilities for early diagnosis and effective treatment.

According to data published by WHO on June 5, the last severe cases of the disease in Africa were reported in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in April after the country recorded 19 cases of the virus. WHO said that as part of its coordination of potential Mpox vaccine donors, it was working with other WHO member states who are interested in donating vaccines to the country.

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