World monkeypox outbreak tops 50,000 cases; transmission slowing in hot spots
Published: Sep 01, 2022 09:32 PM
More than 50,000 monkeypox cases have been recorded in the global outbreak, World Health Organization (WHO) figures showed on Wednesday, though transmission is slowing in the virus hot spots of Europe and the US.

The WHO's dashboard listed 50,496 cases and 16 deaths as reported in 2022 to the UN agency, which declared the outbreak a global public health emergency in July.

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the declines in new infections proved the outbreak could be halted.

"In the Americas, which accounts for more than half of reported cases, several countries continue to see increasing numbers of infections, although it is encouraging to see a sustained downward trend in Canada," he told a press conference. "Some European countries, including Germany and the Netherlands, are also seeing a clear slowing of the outbreak, demonstrating the effectiveness of public health interventions and community engagement to track infections and prevent transmission.

"These signs confirm what we have said consistently since the beginning: That with the right measures, this is an outbreak that can be stopped."

A surge in monkeypox infections has been reported since early May among men who have sex with men.

The WHO triggered its highest level of alarm on July 24, classifying it as a public health emergency of international concern, alongside COVID-19.

Cases have been reported from 101 territories, though only 52 have reported new cases in the last seven days - of which 27 were reporting numbers in single figures.

The countries which have reported more than 1,000 ­cases to the WHO in total are the US (17,994), Spain (6,543), Brazil (4,693), France (3,547), Germany (3,467), Britain (3,413), Peru (1,463), Canada (1,228) and the Netherlands (1,160).