Cases of monkeypox are spreading across Europe, and Belgium, where three cases have been recorded, has introduced a mandatory 21-day quarantine for anyone infected with the virus.

Cases of monkeypox have been recorded across Europe

Britons should be on the lookout for symptoms of monkeypox as Belgium became the first country to introduce restrictive measures.

Cases are spreading across Europe and Belgium, where three cases have been recorded, have introduced a mandatory 21-day quarantine for anyone infected with the virus.

Outbreaks have been reported in Spain, Portugal and Central Africa and on Friday Spain reported 23 cases, some of which were linked to a sauna in Madrid.

An island festival in Spain attended by 80,000 people is said to be the source of the cases in Spain and Italy.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has confirmed 20 cases in the UK with nine other countries outside Central and West Africa also reporting outbreaks.

According to Dr Susan Hopkins, UKHSA’s chief medical adviser, more and more cases of the disease are being reported in the UK.

Dr Hopkins said in an interview with the BBC that young children are more at risk.

She said: “We know from reports from Africa, where outbreaks have been going on for years, that certain individuals are at much greater risk of severe illness, including those who are immunosuppressed or children.







If you develop a rash, you should immediately seek medical attention
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“In adults, it’s relatively mild.”

The disease, first discovered in monkeys, can be transmitted from person to person by close physical contact – including sexual contact – and is caused by the monkeypox virus.

Medical scientists are still learning about this disease because it is a new disease that has not yet circulated in the community.

She told the BBC: “Clearly, this is a new infectious disease that we haven’t seen in our community before.

“We’re going to need to learn a lot about it in the coming weeks.”

There were 20 cases of monkeypox on Friday and Dr Hopkins said updated figures for the weekend would be released on Monday as she warned of more cases “on a daily basis”.

She was asked about the risks to summer festivalgoers and children vacationing abroad.

She told the BBC’s Sunday Morning programme: “We’re seeing more cases every day.

“We know that there has been a period of restriction across Europe and we do not know where this infection came from and how it entered Europe.

“There is no clear link in our UK cases to a single event.”

“The risk to the general population remains extremely low,” she said – but added: “People need to be on the lookout for it, and we really want clinicians to be wary of it.”







According to Dr Susan Hopkins, UKHSA’s chief medical adviser, more and more cases are being reported every day in the UK.
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Symptoms include an illness caused by a virus, before a chickenpox-like rash spreads throughout the body.

Dr. Hopkins said anyone who feels they have any of these signs should “stay home”.

“If you develop a rash, seek medical attention immediately, by calling your GP or sexual health clinic,” she says.

It is believed that the worldwide Covid lockdowns may have fueled the spread of the virus.

“We know that there has been a period of restriction across Europe and we do not know where the infection is coming from,” she said.

“There is no clear link to a single event in our UK cases.”

Asked if people needed to be vaccinated against the infection, she told BBC One’s Sunday Morning: “There is no direct vaccine for monkeypox but we are using a form of smallpox vaccine – a third generation smallpox vaccine is safe for contacts of cases.

“So we don’t use it in the general population.

“We’re using it for people who we believe are at high risk of developing symptoms and using it early, especially within four or five days of the case developing symptoms.

“For contacts, [this] reduce your risk of developing disease, so that’s how we’re focusing our immunization efforts at this point. “

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