Monkeypox cases in England rise to 56 as UK health agency urges caution

The number of cases has risen by 36, the UK Health Security Agency has confirmed

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The number of monkeypox cases has risen by 36, bringing the total number of monkeypox cases confirmed in England since May 7 to 56.

Dr Susan Hopkins, chief medical adviser at the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said: “Alongside reports of further cases being identified in other countries globally, we continue to identify additional cases in the UK.

The UK Health Security Agency are urging caution against the virus
The UK Health Security Agency are urging caution against the virus
The number of cases has risen by 36
The number of cases has risen by 36

“Thank you to everyone who has come forward for testing already and supported our contact tracing efforts – you are helping us limit the spread of this infection in the UK.

“Because the virus spreads through close contact, we are urging everyone to be aware of any unusual rashes or lesions, and to contact a sexual health service if they have any symptoms.

“A notable proportion of recent cases in the UK and Europe have been found in gay and bisexual men, so we are particularly encouraging these men to be alert to the symptoms.”

The latest update comes just hours after Downing Street said the UKHSA is monitoring monkeypox “extremely carefully”.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “We have the UK Health Security Agency who are monitoring this extremely carefully.

“The facts we know is that monkeypox is not usually spread easily between people, and the risk to others remains low.

“A notable portion of early cases detected have been in gay and bisexual men, so the UKHSA is urging this community in particular to be alert.

“It’s true to say that most people recover within a few weeks.”

Asked if the Prime Minister has spoken to chief medical officer Professor Sir Chris Whitty over the matter, the spokesman said: “I don’t believe he has.

“He’s receiving regular updates on it and the Health Secretary is leading for the Cabinet.”