- BBC News World
The US government declared a national public health emergency over the monkeypox outbreak on Thursday, at a time when nearly 7,000 cases are recorded in the country.
With this initiative, the government hopes to take the response to the disease “to the next level”, the health secretary said, Xavier Becerra. The decision will allow the federal government to allocate more funds to deal with the wave of infections.
Agencies will be able to launch the development of new vaccines and treatments, as well as recruit new specialized personnel.
The announcement comes after the states of New York, Illinois and California also declared states of emergency due to the rapid increase in cases of this virus, endemic to Africa but detected in at least 75 countries since May.
Pressure to deal with the epidemic
The United States also named two officials earlier this week who will manage the outbreak at a central level.
Similarly, last July, the World Health Organization (WHO) also issued a global monkeypox alert, which is its maximum warning.
Since the first cases were recorded in May, activists and public health experts have called on both the WHO and various governments around the world faster viral responseto prevent it from establishing itself as an endemic disease outside the African continent.
These groups have also warned of discrimination against the LGBTTQ+ population, a community in which a high number of cases have been recorded and which has faced enormous challenges when seeking medical care.
First identified in monkeys in 1958, then in humans in 1970, monkeypox is a disease that cause fever, headache and sore feetI which sometimes contain pus.
Every person may be at risk of infectionalthough the majority of the population usually recovers within two weeks, according to the WHO.
However, it could pose a danger to pregnant women, children and immunocompromised people.
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