As a precautionary measure, UKHSA experts are working closely with NHS colleagues and will be contacting people who might have been in close contact with the individual to provide information and health advice. As a precautionary measure, UKHSA experts are working closely with the individuals and NHS colleagues and will be contacting people who might have been in close contact to provide information and health advice. Monkeypox is usually a mild self-limiting illness, spread by very close contact with someone with monkeypox and most people recover within a few weeks. We continue to engage with partners across the sector at pace to deliver training webinars about monkeypox to clinicians to increase knowledge and awareness of this infection which is unusual in clinical settings in the UK. The first of these was hosted earlier this week by British Association for Sexual Health and HIV and was attended by over 900 people. However, the virus does not usually spread easily between people and the risk to the UK population remains low.
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Please continue to be aware of symptoms, including rashes and blisters, particularly if you have recently had a new sexual partner. Britain’s biggest water company, Thames Water, which supplies some 15million people, said it would announce a ban in the coming weeks. Restrictions covering nearly three million people have already been announced by Southern Water, South East Water and Welsh Water. Thames Water covers parts of London, Surrey, Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire and Kent. Its hosepipe ban comes despite the fact it lets 635million litres of water a day leak from its pipes. Yorkshire, with five million customers, Severn Trent with eight million and South West with up to two million people are also believed to be considering introducing hosepipe bans.
- There are lots of festive activities that you can enjoy in Dorset with friends and family this year.
- Firefighters are called to land in Somerset and Wiltshire to prevent flames from spreading.
- Additionally, today, UKHSA has published guidance principles agreed across all 4 UK nations on how to effectively limit transmission of monkeypox and limit onward transmission when cases are identified.
- There are also often events, webinars, conferences and seminars that are either organised by HSE, or where HSE has significant involvement.
UKHSA and the NHS have well established and robust infection control procedures for dealing with cases of imported infectious disease and these will be strictly followed. People without symptoms are not considered infectious but, as a precaution, those who have been in close proximity to the individuals are being contacted to ensure that, if they do become unwell, they can be treated quickly. One of the cases is receiving care at the expert infectious disease unit at St Mary’s Hospital, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, London.
Anyone with unusual rashes or lesions on any part of their body, especially their genitalia, should contact NHS 111 or call a sexual health service if they have concerns. In addition, UKHSA has purchased supplies of a safe smallpox vaccine and this is being offered to close contacts of those diagnosed with monkeypox to reduce the risk of symptomatic infection and severe illness. This includes advice and protocols for those testing positive for monkeypox, their close contacts and anyone involved in their treatment or care, including healthcare workers. The principles are already in use in response to the outbreak, and today’s publication confirms the UK’s aligned response. The NHS is already contacting those eligible for the vaccine, and I would urge people to take up the offer as soon as they are contacted. In the meantime, please contact a sexual health clinic if you notice any unusual rashes or lesions.
Tuesday 21 June 2022
We are contacting any potential close contacts of the cases to provide health information and advice. Clinicians should be alert to individuals presenting with rashes without a clear alternative diagnosis and should contact specialist services for advice. Monkeypox has not previously been described as a sexually transmitted infection, though it can be passed on by direct contact during sex. It can also be passed on through other close contact with a person who has monkeypox or contact with clothing or linens used by a person who has monkeypox.