Science

The WHO has no evidence that monkeypox is transmitted by…

The technical director of monkeypox of the World Health Organization (WHO), Rosamund Lewis, has pointed out that at the moment no case of monkeypox has been confirmed by blood transfusion.

“So far there is no case of transmission of monkeypox by blood transfusion,” explained the expert at a press conference this Wednesday from Geneva (Switzerland).

As for another possible form of transmission, semen, Lewis has detailed that “there are studies that show virus DNA in semen, but we do not know if it is transmitted.” “Intimate contact in a sexual relationship allows transmission and semen itself may contribute to it, but we don’t know yet,” she added.

Based on all this scientific evidence, the expert recalled that the WHO recommends the use of condoms as a precautionary measure because “we still do not know if the infection is transmitted through semen, but also because it reduces skin-to-skin contact”.

“It is preferable to completely avoid skin-to-skin contact with someone who has monkeypox, but at the very least using a condom reduces risk,” he said.

The expert has detailed that to protect yourself from monkeypox “you have to limit physical contact with someone who has the virus, reduce the number of sexual partners, casual sex and new partners.”

Likewise, he has insisted that these recommendations “are for anyone who has multiple sexual partners, not just for men who have sex with men.” “It is not a disease that is limited to a specific group. What happens is that it is being transmitted mainly in one population group: men who identify as gay or bisexual. But physical contact of any kind with someone infected can put to anyone at risk”, he stressed.

For his part, the director general of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, has described the downward data in countries such as Canada, Germany or the Netherlands as “encouraging”.

“It demonstrates the effectiveness of public health interventions and community engagement to track infections and prevent transmission. These signs confirm what we have consistently said from the beginning: that with the right measures, this is an outbreak that can be prevented.” stop. And in regions where there is no animal-to-human transmission, this is a virus that can be eliminated. We may be living with COVID-19 for the foreseeable future, but we don’t have to live with monkeypox,” has argued.

In any case, he has warned that the elimination “is not going to happen just like that.” “Three things are needed: the evidence that it is possible, which we are now beginning to see; the political will and commitment; and the application of public health measures in the communities that need it most,” he listed.

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