Peruvian health authorities have reported the number of monkeypox cases in the country had reached 282 Sunday, 34 days after the first infection was confirmed.
All patients have been receiving medical care, 77 medical discharges were registered and contact identification is underway, Peru's Health Ministry (Minsa) said on Twitter. It added most cases (242) were from Lima and Callao, but infections had been detected in 9 of Peru's 25 regions.
Peruvian Medical Association Dean Raul Urquizo warned in a radio interview that the country was the second-worst hit by the malady in the Americas. In a few weeks, we have significantly increased the number of cases.
This is because the population at risk is not taking preventive measures, Urquizo added. There is wide consensus among healthcare practitioners that those most at risk are men who have sex with other men, although the virus can be caught in some other ways.
Brazil is nearing 1,000 cases and has already registered the first death of a patient with this disease. (Read also: https://en.mercopress.com/2022/07/29/brazil-reports-first-death-of-patient-with-monkeypox )
Health Minister Jorge López had said last week after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared monkeypox an international emergency, that his office was evaluating the purchase of vaccines.
Since May this year, WHO has reported over 18,000 cases of monkeypox in 78 countries, 70% of them in Europe. On Saturday, it activated its highest level of alert to try to contain the outbreak. Monkeypox is considered a rare viral disease transmitted by close contact with an infected person with skin lesions. The disease was first identified in humans in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of Congo and is now considered endemic in a dozen African countries. Simian orthopoxvirus is less dangerous and contagious than smallpox, which was eradicated worldwide in 1980.
Meanwhile, Spain's Health Ministry Saturday confirmed the second death in the country of a patient with monkeypox, less than 24 hours after the first death was reported. The identities of the patients were not disclosed, but it became known they were two young men.
The first death occurred in the Valencian Community, in eastern Spain, as a result of encephalitis associated with the infection. The second person died in the southern city of Cordoba from meningoencephalitis, also associated with monkeypox.
According to the National Epidemiological Surveillance Network, 4,298 cases of the virus have been confirmed in Spain, of which only 64 are women, while 120 people have been hospitalized. Over 80% of infections occurred as a result of sexual intercourse, while infection in 10.5% of cases occurred through close non-sexual contact. The average age of a person infected with monkeypox in Spain is 37 years, although cases have occurred in a 10-month-old infant and an 88-year-old man.
Cases of the disease have been reported in Spain's 17 autonomous communities, however, the majority are from the Community of Madrid (1,656), followed by Catalonia in the northeast of the country (1,406) and the southern region of Andalusia (498). Spain is one of the countries most affected by monkeypox.