With five deaths so far due to the outbreak globally, the World Health Organisation has declared monkeypox, a self-limited disease, a global public health emergency of international concern. Monkeypox typically starts with fever, headache and rashes, accompanied by sore throat, cough and swollen lymph nodes. The symptoms include lesions, which usually comes within three days of the fever, lasting for around two to four weeks. Often the painful lesions turn itchy during the healing phase.
Here are major the guidelines issued by the central government for monkeypox patients and their contacts.
* Patients should remain in isolation until all lesions have healed and the scabs completely fallen off.
* 21-day isolation for contacts: After coming in contact with a monkeypox patient or their contaminated materials, one has to stay in isolation for 21 days. A primary contact is a person who has come in contact with an infected person through face-to-face exposure, direct physical touch or with contaminated materials such as clothing or bedding.
* Appropriate PPE: Use appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) when caring for patients. Health workers, who have unprotected exposure to monkeypox patients or possibly contaminated materials, however, need not be excluded from duty if asymptomatic but should undergo surveillance for symptoms for 21 days, according to the guidelines.
* The asymptomatic contacts should not donate blood, cells, tissues, organs or semen while under surveillance.
* Wearing masks: The infected person should wear a triple-ply mask .
* Hand hygiene: Practice good hand hygiene after contact with infected animals or humans. For example, washing hands with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
* Keeping lesions fully covered: Skin lesions should be covered to the best extent possible to minimise the risk of contact with others.