In 2022, the World Health Organization issued a global health emergency declaration due to the spread of monkeypox through interpersonal and intimate contacts to numerous nations.
Humans can readily contract monkeypox from infected primates including monkeys, squirrels, and rodents by coming into touch with their bodily fluids, blood, skin, or sores. A bite, a scratch, improper handling of, or consumption of insufficiently prepared or other products of infected bushmeat can also result in transmission. Additionally, human-to-human transmission of monkeypox can occur through contact with respiratory droplets, skin lesions, body fluids, and contaminated objects like bedding.
Even though there were 226 incidents reported by the authorities in just five years, it is interesting that around 157 of those occurrences occurred between May and July of 2022.
The pattern in the outbreak report reveals that the increase in cases didn’t begin until May, when the overall trend began to intensify. Adamawa, Imo, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) each had one case in January, Lagos had another in February, there were six cases in March, five more in April, and there was one death in six further cases in Rivers and Bayelsa in May, prior to the intensified rave about the disease.
When monkeypox began gaining greater international attention at the end of May, the NCDC formed a national emergency operations centre to enhance response to the infection. The 133 cases that were reported between May 30 and July 31 and the two additional deaths could be attributed to the impact of the increased attention.
This highlights how important it is to increase the effectiveness of illness surveillance in order to decrease under-reporting.
The global rave in May helped to get more proactive involvement and there is now much more knowledge and surveillance for the monkeypox disease, but we cannot always wait for a worldwide rave to put the proper measures in place. While the government is primarily responsible for this, the Nigeria Solidarity Support Fund is dedicated to supporting and collaborating with organizations focused on ensuring a healthier Nigeria.
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