(CTN News) – Monkeypox is on the radar of Thai officials. Earlier today, the country upgraded its monkeypox alert to a national level.
The World Health Organization declared monkeypox a Global Health Emergency today, and Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul called an emergency meeting.
Following the first monkeypox case in Thailand, a Nigerian man escaped to Cambodia. Despite being diagnosed with the virus in Phuket, the man fled when officials went to his condo to take him to a hospital. He was arrested yesterday in Cambodia after swimming across the Sa Kaeo River.
The Phuket health department says it has tracked down people who were in close contact with the man.
According to the Phuket Public Health Office, two of the 19 had recently tested negative for monkeypox, while the results for the others would be available shortly.
At today’s meeting, Anutin said health chiefs believed the man had not spread the virus. Health officials around the country are working with border checkpoints to screen travelers for monkeypox. At-risk travelers are closely monitored, he said.
The Medical Services Department says it has enough vaccines to protect Thailand against outbreak of monkeypox.
According to the department, the vaccine has been in cold storage for 40 years, but it is still viable. As a precaution, the department said it has sufficient medicine and facilities in case monkeypox outbreaks occur.
In addition to Covid-19, Anutin says monkeypox prevention measures are effective against monkeypox.
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