Taiwan reports third case of monkey pox

Taipei, Aug. 6 (CNA) Taiwan reported its third case of viral monkeypox on Saturday, saying it was an imported case involving a man in his 20s, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

The patient, who lives in northern Taiwan, went to the United States in early July before returning to Taiwan on Tuesday, CDC Deputy Director General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said in a briefing.

The infected man began showing symptoms on Wednesday, including swollen lymph nodes, fever, back pain and rash, and went to a hospital a day later for testing, he said, adding that the test was positive for monkey pox Saturday.

He said the patient had been placed in isolation and treated in a hospital.

According to Chuang, two other individuals who had lived with the infected man in the US and returned to Taiwan with him have been categorized as close contacts with a high risk of contracting the disease.

The two close contacts showed no signs of symptoms, but they will be closely monitored by local health authorities until Aug. 23, Chuang said.

In addition, Chuang said, the CDC has listed others who flew with the infected man and sat close to him during the flight as intermediate-risk contacts for contracting the disease and asked them to monitor their health until Aug. 23.

Taiwan reported its first case of monkey pox on June 24 and its second case on July 12. Both were imported infections, one returning to Taiwan from Germany and the other returning from the US

The CDC officially designated monkeypox as a Category 2 communicable disease on June 23, in light of the ongoing global outbreak. The designation means doctors must now report confirmed or suspected cases of monkeypox to the CDC within 24 hours.

Other category 2 communicable diseases in Taiwan include dengue fever, Zika fever, typhoid fever, measles and chikungunya.

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared monkey pox a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) on July 23.

According to the CDC, which said most infections were reported in Europe and America, at least 27,195 cases of monkeypox have been confirmed in 85 countries since the first infections were reported in the United Kingdom in mid-May.

Monkeypox is caused by the monkeypox virus, which can spread through close contact with an infected animal or person, and transmission occurs through direct contact with an infectious rash, scabs, bodily fluids, or materials contaminated with the virus.

Monkeypox usually results in a fever, rash and swollen lymph nodes, the CDC said, urging travelers arriving in Taiwan to report such symptoms to airport staff and seek medical attention.

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