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WEDNESDAY, February 08, 2023
Thailand's monkeypox emergency centre monitoring arrivals

Thailand's monkeypox emergency centre monitoring arrivals

MONDAY, May 23, 2022

Thailand’s Department of Disease Control (DDC) has set up a Public Health Emergency Centre to monitor the global spread of monkeypox and tighten monitoring at its border. The disease has so far spread to 15 countries, with more than 100 confirmed cases.

The Department of Disease Control (DDC) says no cases of monkeypox have been detected in Thailand so far.

“However, easing of travel restrictions has brought increasing numbers of foreign visitors, which could bring the disease to Thailand,” DDC chief Dr Opas Karnkawinpong said on Sunday.

“The centre will therefore focus on keeping a close eye on foreign arrivals, especially those from high-risk countries.”

The 15 countries that have reported monkeypox cases are Britain, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Belgium, France, Germany, Sweden, United States, Canada, Australia, Israel, Netherlands, Switzerland and Greece.

From May 1-22, Thailand received 13,142 visitors from the UK, 1,352 from Spain and 268 from Portugal, Opas said. He added that the Thai public would be informed immediately if any cases of monkeypox are found.

Monkeypox spreads through close contact with infected people or animals.

Opas advised people planning to travel to at-risk countries to avoid eating uncooked meat or touching rodents such as rats and squirrels, and primates such as monkeys. Those who come into contact with such animals should immediately wash their hands with soap and water. Monkeypox symptoms to look out for include fever and a rash on the face, arms and/or legs. Any traveller with these symptoms should see a doctor immediately and notify authorities of their travel history, Opas said.

The DDC hotline is at 1422.