POLICE tracked the Nigerian man infected with Monkeypox and is Thailand’s first such case to the Thai-Cambodian border with his mobile phone signal having been picked up at Sa Kaeo province bordering Cambodia’s Banteay Meanchey province, Naewna newspaper said this afternoon (July 23).
Dr. Opas Karnkawinpong, the head of the Public Health Ministry’s Disease Control Department, said Thai police and Phuket Public Health Office confirmed that the Monkeypox-infected man’s mobile phone signal had emerged at the border and it was now quite clear that he had escaped to Cambodia via a natural route.
The Foreign Ministry has contacted Cambodian authorities about this case while Sa Kaeo provincial public health office coordinated with their counterparts in Banteay Meanchey.
Meanwhile 19 people at high-risk of exposure to Monkeypox are undergoing tests with none of them having displayed any symptoms so far. Two have tested negative while the results of 17 others are pending, he said, adding there were 14 others with low-risk exposure.
Of another 142 people were traced proactively for possible infection but none had any rash. However six of them had other symptoms including fever, sore throat and muscle ache with five getting negative results while one has gone overseas.
Dr. Opas clarified that Monkeypox is not as easily transmitted as Covid-19 with the symptoms of this disease also not being severe. The same preventive measures for Covid-19 also apply to Monkeypox with these being washing hands frequently, keeping social distance, not touching those who have rashes, blisters and pustules and not sharing personal items.
“The World Health Organisation held its latest meeting on July 21 and as yet has not declared it an international public health emergency. Thailand too defines it as a communicable disease that must be monitored according to the Communicable Disease Act of 2015.
“It is not a dangerous communicable disease but when a suspected case of Monkeypox is found, it must be quickly reported to local infectious disease control officials for investigation and disease control,” he said.
Yesterday the Disease Control Department’s Epidemiology Division held a video conference to raise surveillance level at sexually transmitted and other medical clinics that treat patients suffering from these diseases to immediately report any patients suspected to have contracted Monkeypox.
Top: Dr. Opas Karnkawinpong, left, and a monkey overlaid on Monkeypox boils. Photo: Matichon
Front Page: A representative image of Monkeypox. Photo: UN