HEALTH

How prepared is Uganda for monkeypox outbreak?

Infectious disease scientists in the country have said there is no need for mass vaccination against monkeypox because they don’t see a major outbreak in the same way as Covid-19.

Dr Julius Lutwama, a virologist at Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI), told Sunday Monitor on Friday that they are on high alert, regardless.

He said they have made a request to their partner institute at the University of Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to give them reagents to help in testing the monkeypox virus. 

The DRC has grappled with the disease for years.
“We are not testing [for monkeypox virus]. We do not have the reagents. We have requested for assistance and as soon as the reagents come in, we may be able to test. We don’t plan to test everybody entering the country because it is not necessary. We will only test suspected cases,” Dr Lutwama said.

The main signs and symptoms of the infection are fevers and blisters, according to health experts.
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