14 hospitals designated for monkeypox readiness
By A Staff Reporter,Kathmandu, June 18: The Ministry of Health and Population has designated 14 hospitals across the seven provinces with a focal person for monkeypox readiness.
According to the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP), the focal persons have been deployed in the Mechi Hospital, Koshi Hospital and BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences (Ghopa Camp) of Koshi Province and Janakpur Hospital and Birgunj Hospital of Madhes Province.
Similarly, Gandaki Provincial Hospital of Gandaki Province, Lumbini Provincial Hospital and Bheri Hospital of Lumbini Province, Surkhet Hospital of Karnali Province and Seti Hospital of Sudurpashchim Province have a focal person for monkeypox.
“If anyone has the symptoms of monkeypox, they can visit the hospitals or contact the health counsellors of the MoHP by calling at 1115 or 1113 for further assistance,” read a statement by the MoHP on Friday.
The readiness against monkeypox was a result of the disease being reported in the country for the first time. As per the ministry, a 60-year-old foreign woman was diagnosed with the disease recently.
Monkeypox is a disease caused by the monkeypox virus of the orthopoxvirus genus in the family Poxviridae. It has been reported in 111 countries to date but is not under the Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).
However, in 2022–2023 a global outbreak of monkeypox was caused by a strain known as clade IIb.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), monkeypox can spread to people when they come into physical contact with an infected animal such as some species of monkeys or terrestrial rodents (such as the tree squirrel).
Similarly, the virus also spreads quickly between humans. The WHO states that the people at risk of monkeypox are those who have close contact – face-to-face, mouth-to-mouth, skin-to-skin or skin-to-mouth contact – with an individual infected with the disease.
Symptoms and treatment
According to the WHO, monkeypox, which is also known as mpox, causes a range of signs and symptoms with severe symptoms in people who are pregnant, children and persons that are immunocompromised, including people with untreated and advanced HIV disease.
Health experts informed that the common symptoms of mpox include a rash, which starts or is followed by fever and headache, body ache and swollen glands, that may last for two-four weeks.
The rash, which looks like blisters or sores that can range from one to several thousand, can affect any part of the body while these lesions may also be found in the mouth, throat, anus, rectum, vagina or eyes.
According to the WHO, some people also develop inflammation inside the rectum and the genitals causing severe pain.
Severe disease due to mpox may include larger, more widespread lesions (especially in the mouth, eyes, and genitals), secondary bacterial infections of the skin or blood and lung infections.
Complications can include severe bacterial infection from skin lesions, mpox affecting the brain (encephalitis), heart (myocarditis) or lungs (pneumonia), and eye problems.
People with severe mpox may require hospitalisation, supportive care and antiviral medicines to reduce the severity of lesions and shorten the time to recovery.
The WHO informed that in most cases, the symptoms of mpox go away within a few weeks with supportive care, such as medication for pain and fever.
Timely diagnosis and proper medical attention are essential for the treatment of the disease, said health experts. Some vaccines are also available against the disease.The Rising Nepal