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US health agency raises monkeypox travel alert to Level 2

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Jun 08, 2022 - 09:49 AM

WASHINGTON (AA) – The US health agency has raised the travel alert to Level 2 because of the spread of the monkeypox virus, which requires practicing “enhanced precautions.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Monday that cases have been reported in Europe, North America, South America, Africa, Asia and Australia, among others.

Travelers should avoid close contact with infected people, including those with skin lesions or genital lesions, it said.

“Risk to the general public is low, but you should seek medical care immediately if you develop new, unexplained skin rash (lesions on any part of the body), with or without fever and chills, and avoid contact with others,” it added.

The CDC has the following alerts for epidemic diseases, including Warning – Level 3, Avoid Nonessential Travel, Alert – Level 2, Practice Enhanced Precautions and Watch – Level 1, Practice Usual Precautions.

Monkeypox usually begins with flu-like symptoms and swelling in the lymph nodes before a rash begins to form on the face and body. Symptoms can take up to 21 days to appear after exposure.

Hundreds of cases have been detected worldwide since cases were first detected in Europe and the US last month. The virus is endemic to western and central Africa.

The US currently has two vaccines to fight the virus in its national stockpile and the CDC has begun distributing them to states.

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