The World Health Organisation has declared the fast-spreading monkeypox virus a global emergency that has to be addressed.
According to the Director-General of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom, the situation had reached alarming rates, and countries worldwide had to treat it as such. He explained that the WHO declared a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC). This will trigger a global response to counter the spread of the virus worldwide and help generate funding for treatments and vaccines by WHO member countries.
Adhanom revealed that a committee of experts had met to evaluate the situation and made recommendations to counter the virus. “Although I am declaring a public health emergency of international concern, for the moment, this is an outbreak that is concentrated among men who have sex with men, especially those with multiple sexual partners. Stigma and discrimination can be as dangerous as any virus,” Tedros told journalists at a press briefing.
The Director General stated that Europe’s rate was very concerning. He explained that the level of medical supplies and vaccines was insufficient to deal with the increasing rates of the virus in Europe and other parts of the world. Many health experts and organisations worldwide have welcomed WHO’s initiative against the Flu-like virus. Others have pledged support to the PHEIC course.
A professor at Georgetown Law in Washington, Lawrence Gostin, stated that WHO’s decision to declare monkeypox as a global emergency was the right step. “The right result is clear – not declaring an emergency at this point would be a historic missed opportunity,” Lawrence Gostin said.
More than 16,000 people worldwide are said to have contracted the disease. On 8th June 2022, the minority of health declared Ghana’s first case of monkeypox. “So far since the outbreak in Europe occurred, we tested 12 suspected cases in Ghana since 24th May. Currently, we have confirmed five cases in three regions – Eastern, Western and Greater Accra – this is where we discovered the five cases; no death has occurred among the cases here.”