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U’khand sounds an alert on Monkeypox disease

Wednesday, 03 August 2022 | PNS | Dehradun

DMs, CMOs directed to strictly monitor the situation, strengthen surveillance and keep the health system on an alert mode

A day after India reported its first death due to the dreaded Monkeypox disease, the state health department of Uttarakhand sounded an alert for the viral disease on Tuesday. In a letter directed to all district magistrates (DMs) and chief medical officers (CMOs), the secretary in charge of health department and mission director (MD) of National Health Mission (NHM), R Rajesh Kumar said that till date no case of Monkeypox has been reported from Uttarakhand state. He said the government of India has issued an advisory on the disease. In the letter, he directed the DMs and CMOs to strictly monitor the situation and strengthen surveillance and keep the health system on an alert mode.

Kumar recommended that the surveillance should be strengthened and its aim shall be to rapidly identify cases and clusters of infections and contain transmission of infections as soon as possible. He said that even one case of Monkeypox is to be considered as an outbreak and suspected cases should be reported immediately to District Surveillance Units State Surveillance Units (SSUs). The letter emphasised on targeted surveillance for probable cases and asked the officers to initiate contact tracing and testing of the symptomatic after the detection of the probable/confirmed case. The letter directed the DMs and CMOs to focus on core surveillance strategy via hospital based surveillance, targeted surveillance and targeted intervention. The alert stresses on preventive strategy, laboratory diagnosis, contact tracing, capacity building, clinical care and awareness generation for the disease.

Monkeypox, a viral zoonotic disease that occurs primarily in tropical rainforest areas of Central and West Africa, has been declared as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

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