Man2Man has released a video update on what to know about monkeypox, which had infected 28 patients in Ireland as of June 29.
In recent video updates from Man2Man and MPOWER about monkeypox in the country, health authorities say this number is still small, and means the spread of monkeypox can hopefully remain well-contained.
“What we now have is an opportunity to stop the spread of the disease before it takes hold,” says Dr Natasha Rafter, a specialist in Public Health Medicine at the Health Protection Surveillance Centre. The Centre is asking that people stay in the know about the symptoms of monkeypox and monitor themselves in order to prevent further spread.
Man2Man Ireland also published a helpful post on Instagram providing useful info on what to know about monkeypox. The post notes that the viral infection most often results simply in a mild illness which lasts a few weeks, but can have more serious effects on young children, those with weak immune systems and those who are pregnant.
“Be alert to a new rash or blisters that can be on any part of the body[,] particularly, the face, mouth, hands, feet, genitals or bum,” the post says regarding symptoms. “Fever, headache, swollen glands, aches and pains can also be a sign of infection.”
Monkeypox spreads through very close contact with those already infected, especially with their rashes, coughs or sneezes, or through sexual contact.
The post advises those with symptoms not to panic, but to be sure to take the next steps in addressing the possible infection. Those steps include contacting one’s general practitioner or sexual health clinic, keeping one’s distance from others and refraining from sexual contact until cleared by a doctor.
In the update video, Medical Director of the HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme Professor Fiona Lyons instructs further that people with symptoms should pursue urgent care if necessary and should get tested for the virus.
The Gay Men’s Health Service echoes the call for those who have symptoms to get in touch with their GP, doctor or sexual health clinic, and noted in a June 29 email that “everyone who has had it… so far is well.”
Anyone who has been in close contact with someone infected with monkeypox will be contacted by health professionals, according to the HSE website.
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