The Director-General of the World Health Organisation (World Health Organisation), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, declared the outbreak of Monkeypox a 'Global Health Emergency' on Sunday. The decision has been taken after considering the virus's rapid spread in over 75 countries.
The WHO labelled Monkeypox as a 'public health emergency of international concern' to invite more international response and initiate global collaboration efforts for treatments and vaccines. The committee that finalised the decision was split into two parts, but the final call was in the hands of the Director-General of WHO, reported Hindustan Times.
During the press conference in Geneva, WHO's Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus informed that the committee formed to review the rapid spread of Monkeypox had failed to reach a conclusion and consensus. There were six committee members in favour of the decision to announce it as a 'Global Health Emergency' and nine members against the decision.
Earlier, the people have seen Tedros endorsing and bringing forward the decision of the expert committee on the table. But this time, in view of the highest alert level about the virus's rapid spread and lack of treatments and vaccines, the Director took the call on his own.
This year, as many as 16,000 Monkeypox cases have been reported in over 75 countries, including five deaths in Africa. According to official data, six countries have reported their first cases in the last week. A professor at Georgetown Law in Wahington, D.C, Lawrence Gostin, said, "It does nothing but polishes the stature of WHO. The right result is clear - not declaring an emergency at this point would be a historic missed opportunity."
Monkeypox In India
The zoonotic viral infection, which is mainly spreading due to human contact, has become a health concern for India. In the last ten days, the country has reported three cases; notably, all are from Kerala. The first, second and third case of Monkeypox was reported on July 14, 18 and 22 in Kerala's Kannur and other districts. All three patients share a similar travel history from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), prompting the government to tighten the review screening at international airports.
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