Vietnam Monitoring Entrants from Countries Reported Monkeypox

The Ministry of Health has asked localities nationwide to monitor foreign arrivals from countries with monkeypox as an early response after infections were spotted in the region.

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Illustrative image. Photo: The Ministry of Health
Illustrative image. Photo: The Ministry of Health

More than 70 countries where monkeypox is not endemic have reported outbreaks of the viral disease, which the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared a global health emergency, as confirmed cases crossed 25,800 and non-endemic countries reported their first deaths.

Seven people have died. Typical symptoms of the disease include fever, headache, muscle pain, skin lesions, and rashes. It is transmitted through contact with bodily fluids or lesion material.

Thailand, Singapore, the Republic of Korea, China, and Japan are some of the regional countries where monkeypox has been detected.

Per the latest decision of Vietnam’s health ministry (MoH), foreign arrivals from countries with monkeypox will have their body temperatures checked and be subject to other monitoring measures. Those suspected to be infected with the condition will be isolated and have their biological samples taken for testing.

The ministry is yet to issue specific instructions on how foreign entrants from countries with monkeypox should be monitored, or when exactly these measures are to be applied, according to VNA.

MoH Deputy Minister Nguyen Truong Son underlined the need to make careful preparations for responding to monkeypox, saying that although no cases of monkeypox had been recorded in Vietnam, the risk of this disease entering the country is very high.

Nguyen Luong Tam, deputy director of the Department of Preventive Medicine under the MoH, said the ministry is currently developing guidelines for monitoring monkeypox cases in Vietnam and reactivating the border quarantine system.

Nguyen Trong Khoa, Vice Director of the Department for Medical Examination and Treatment under the MoH, said the ministry has developed a plan to respond to emergency situations, adding scenarios to deal with this disease have also been taken into account by the health ministry.

Passengers undergo security check at an airport. Photo: VNA
Passengers undergo security checks at an airport. Photo: VNA

Last week, Ho Chi Minh City proposed that foreign arrivals are asked to complete medical declarations at the border as one of the anti-monkeypox measures.

The municipal People’s Committee said in the current context, it is an urgent need to proactively monitor and early detect suspected infections in order to make a timely response to prevent the disease from spreading.

It noted that the local health sector is stepping up monitoring at ports of entry and health establishments while intensifying communications in the community to early discover monkeypox cases, which is one of the sector’s urgent tasks at present.

Besides screening measures at the border, the ministry has also requested monitoring at different health facilities and added vigilance at certain events in the community.

For countries that have yet to record any monkeypox cases like Vietnam, WHO has given some temporary recommendations regarding responding measures, including activating the inter-sectoral coordination mechanism to enhance readiness to respond to monkeypox, and prevent it from spreading.

Along with enhancing the disease supervision system, WHO recommended that Vietnam actively update and share information for local residents on disease prevention measures as well as ways to protect themselves in case monkeypox may enter Vietnam.

Below are the non-endemic countries and territories that have reported monkeypox-related deaths, Reuters reported on August 4:

* BRAZIL reported its first death on July 31.

* INDIA reported first death on Aug. 1.

* SPAIN reported its second death on July 30.

ASIA-PACIFIC

* AUSTRALIA had confirmed 53 cases as of Aug. 2.

* INDIA had confirmed nine cases as of Aug. 3.

* JAPAN had reported two cases as of July 29.

* NEW ZEALAND reported three cases on Aug. 2.

* The PHILIPPINES reported its first case on July 29.

* SINGAPORE had confirmed 13 cases as of Aug. 3.

* SOUTH KOREA reported two cases on June 22.

* TAIWAN confirmed two cases as of Aug. 2.

* THAILAND had confirmed three cases as of Aug. 3.

EUROPE

* ANDORRA had confirmed three cases as of July 27.

* AUSTRIA had confirmed 135 cases as of Aug. 2.

* BELGIUM had detected 482 cases by Aug. 3.

* BOSNIA reported its first case on July 13.

* BULGARIA had confirmed four cases as of July 22.

* CROATIA had reported 12 cases by Aug. 2.

* CZECH REPUBLIC had confirmed 25 cases as of Aug. 3.

* DENMARK had confirmed 108 cases by Aug. 4.

* ESTONIA had confirmed eight cases by Aug. 2.

* FINLAND had confirmed 20 cases as of Aug. 3.

* FRANCE had confirmed 2,239 cases by Aug. 3.

* GEORGIA confirmed its first case on June 15.

* GERMANY had reported 2,839 cases by Aug. 4.

* GIBRALTAR had confirmed five cases as of July 20.

* GREECE had confirmed 33 cases by Aug. 3.

* HUNGARY had confirmed 42 cases by Aug. 3.

* ICELAND had reported 10 cases as of Aug. 3.

* IRELAND had confirmed 97 cases as of Aug. 3.

* ITALY had detected 505 cases as of Aug. 2.

* LATVIA had confirmed three cases as of July 25.

* LITHUANIA confirmed its first case on Aug. 3.

* LUXEMBOURG had confirmed 30 cases as of Aug. 2.

* MALTA had confirmed 17 cases as of July 20.

* MONTENEGRO reported its first case on Aug. 1.

* The NETHERLANDS had confirmed 927 cases as of Aug. 2.

* NORWAY had reported 63 cases by Aug. 4.

* POLAND had reported 63 cases by Aug. 2.

* PORTUGAL had confirmed 633 cases as of July 28.

* ROMANIA had confirmed 22 cases as of Aug. 2.

* RUSSIA confirmed its first case on July 12.

* SERBIA had reported 10 cases as of July 27.

* SLOVENIA had reported 37 cases as of Aug. 2.

* SLOVAKIA had confirmed six cases as of Aug. 2.

* SPAIN had confirmed 4,577 cases by Aug. 2.

* SWEDEN had confirmed 102 cases by Aug. 2.

* SWITZERLAND had confirmed 304 cases as of Aug. 3.

* The UNITED KINGDOM had 2,672 confirmed cases as of Aug. 1, including 2,551 in England, 65 in Scotland, 24 in Northern Ireland and 32 in Wales.

MIDDLE EAST & AFRICA

* ISRAEL had reported 160 cases as of Aug. 4.

* LEBANON had reported four cases as of July 21.

* MOROCCO reported first case on June 2.

* QATAR confirmed its first case on July 20.

* SAUDI ARABIA detected its first case on July 14.

* SOUTH AFRICA confirmed its third case on July 11.

* TURKEY reported first case on June 30.

* The UNITED ARAB EMIRATES had reported 16 infections as of July 24.

AMERICAS

* ARGENTINA had confirmed 32 cases as of Aug. 3.

* The BAHAMAS confirmed its first case on June 24.

* BARBADOS confirmed its first case on July 21.

* BERMUDA confirmed its first case on July 21.

* BRAZIL had confirmed 1,474 cases by Aug. 1.

* BOLIVIA confirmed three case on Aug. 3.

* CANADA had confirmed 890 infections as of Aug. 3.

* CHILE had reported 69 cases as of Aug. 3.

* COLOMBIA had reported 20 cases as of Aug. 2.

* COSTA RICA confirmed three cases on July 28.

* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC confirmed its fourth case on Aug. 3.

* ECUADOR had confirmed six cases as of Aug. 2.

* GUATEMALA confirmed its first case on Aug. 3.

* JAMAICA had confirmed two cases as of July 26.

* MEXICO had confirmed 91 cases as of Aug. 3.

* PANAMA confirmed its first case on July 4.

* PERU had confirmed 340 cases by Aug. 3.

* PUERTO RICO had confirmed 21 cases as of July 29.

* The UNITED STATES had confirmed 6,617 cases by Aug. 3.

* URUGUAY confirmed its second case on Aug. 2.

* VENEZUELA confirmed its first case on June 12.

Hannah Nguyen