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World Health Organization declares the Monkeypox outbreak as a global health emergency

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The World Health Organization has declared the Monkeypox outbreak a global health emergency.

The classification is the highest level of alert that the WHO can issue and comes in the wake of a worldwide increase in cases.

It is the seventh such declaration made since 2009, the most recent being for Covid-19, which was given the same label by the WHO in 2020 and comes after a meeting of an expert committee on Thursday, July 21 2022.

According to WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, more than 16,000 cases have been reported from 75 countries. He added that five people had died as a result of the outbreak.

There are currently only two such health emergencies: the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing effort to eradicate polio.

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Image Via: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

While Europe has been hardest hit, cases have also been reported in the United States, Canada, Australia, Nigeria, Israel, Brazil, and Mexico, among other places.

According to Josie Golding, head of epidemics and epidemiology at the Wellcome Trust, the decision should aid in the containment of the viral disease.

“We cannot afford to wait for diseases to worsen before intervening,” she said.

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