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Public in Thailand Urged to Stay Calm Over Monkeypox

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Public in Thailand Urged to Stay Calm Over Monkeypox

Thailand’s Prime Minister has urged the public to stay calm as the health department searches for a European man they believe is spreading monkeypox to the gay community. Health department officials believed he had infected the Thai man.

Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, the government spokesman, said the prime minister asked people not to panic and advised them to avoid high-risk behaviours that could spread the monkeypox virus.

It is difficult to transmit monkeypox unless you are directly in contact with bodily fluids or lesions or are close to someone infected for a prolonged period of time.

Generally, most monkeypox causes can recover on their own at home within two to four weeks, according to Mr. Thanakorn.

According to Dr. Sophon Iamsirithavorn, deputy chief of the Department of Disease Control (DDC), the 47-year-old Thai man has never travelled interprovincially and has always lived in the capital.

It does not appear that the man has severe symptoms. According to Dr. Sophon, he is being treated in an isolation ward at Vajira Hospital.

He was likely infected via sexual relations with the European man who he became friendly with on social media, Dr. Sophon added.

Dr. Sophon said the department is in contact with various embassies to locate the European man, who is believed to still be carrying the virus.

Monkeypox cases, mainly gay men

The Thai man lived with 10 family members in a townhouse. All of them are considered at-risk. Yesterday, the DDC found six more of his relatives living in another house.

However, none of the 16 people have shown any symptoms yet, said Dr. Suthat Chottanapund, director of the Institute of Urban Disease Control and Prevention. Their samples were taken, and the lab tests will come out soon. All are now being isolated for 21 days, he said.

Yong Poovorawan, chief of Chulalongkorn University’s Centre of Excellence in Clinical Virology, is concerned that animals could become carriers and pose a health risk to humans.

According to Dr. Yong, the number of patients needing treatment for monkeypox has been increasing since the outbreak in Africa began. There are currently more than 18,000 cases across 75 countries, mostly in the United States and Europe, the WHO reports.

The World Health Organization (WHO) also stated that about 98% of those patients are homosexual or bisexual men.

There have been only five deaths related to monkeypox.

In almost 40% of the cases, the men developed a rash around their groin after getting infected through homosexual encounters.

The chief concern is that monkeypox is a member of the Poxviridae family, which mostly infects rodent species, although it can be transmitted to humans through bodily fluids, bites and undercooked meat from infected animals.

Now fears are growing that the virus could become equally prevalent in men and women.

“If that happened, it would be difficult to control the spread and prevention of monkeypox,” said Dr. Yong.

Although these individuals are at a higher risk, the reports should be wary of using suggestive language that is not supported by clinical evidence, and they should concentrate on the disease itself and how most effectively to treat it,” he said.

Despite concerns about monkeypox, Yuthasak Supasorn, governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), said the country’s tourism industry is not affected by the monkeypox disease.