Twelve African countries have so far reported 1,782 cases of monkeypox, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) revealed on Thursday.
Spread of monkeypox in Africa shows ‘worrying sign’, warns WHO
Of the 1,782 cases of monkeypox that have been reported in Africa, some 1,678 of them are suspected cases while 104 are confirmed cases, said Ahmed Ogwell, acting director of Africa CDC.
Cases have been reported in both endemic and non-endemic countries for monkeypox, highlighting that Benin, Morocco and South Africa are the non-endemic members of the African Union (AU) reporting confirmed cases of monkeypox. disease.
“Unfortunately, 73 deaths have been reported across the continent as a result of the monkeypox outbreak, bringing the case fatality rate to 4.1%,” Ogwell said, adding that Africa CDC is providing training to 20 health experts from different countries. parts of the continent to Nigeria to help them build their capacity for laboratory diagnosis of monkeypox in their respective countries.
“The training is very important as it builds the capacity of our member states to confirm suspected cases,” Ogwell said, noting that clinical laboratory confirmation of the disease has been slow across the continent.
The Africa CDC’s Pathogen Genomics Institute is also working on sequencing monkeypox samples so that it is able to identify and document any variants that may arise in any member of the AU.
“We will continue to sequence monkeypox samples as we have done for COVID-19 to ensure we understand and know the type of pathogen we are dealing with on the continent,” he added. .
Ethiopia, Guinea, Liberia, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Sudan and Uganda – all countries with no previous incidence – have also reported suspected cases, the WHO said in a recent report.