Thai authorities say 12 people who were in contact with monkeypox are low-risk

Thailand’s Department of Disease Control says 12 people who came into contact with a confirmed monkeypox patient earlier this week are low-risk, since they don’t have symptoms. A passenger with monkeypox was in Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport for 2 hours before he caught a flight to Australia, where he was confirmed to have the virus.

The DDC said today that there were no confirmed cases of monkeypox in Thailand so far. Still, the director of the DDC’s epidemiology division said the 12 people will be monitored for 21 days. The director, Dr. Chakkarat Pitayawonganon, said the DDC would monitor the situation to decide if they should distribute vaccines to medical staff. He said if monkeypox spreads, then vaccines must be distributed.

Chakkarat said that if monkeypox doesn’t spread, then side-effects from vaccines might be more serious than the risk of being unvaccinated. He said that if vaccines need to be given, at-risk groups will get first priority, such as people who have come from foreign countries or medical personnel.

The 12 people who came into contact with the confirmed monkeypox patient include crew members and passengers. The passenger with monkeypox had been flying to Australia from Europe.

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The current monkeypox strain has a very low fatality rate (around 1%). There are a few signs to watch out for including sore throat, headache, body pains, fever, rashes and blisters. Although Thailand has no confirmed cases, Thai health officials are on the lookout for anyone showing these symptoms, and monitoring anyone who has travelled from countries where cases have been reported.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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