Heed advice about Mpox!

The La Nkwatanang Ma­dina Municipal Direc­torate of Ghana Health Service (GHS) has called on the public to report unusual body rashes for test to be con­ducted for symptoms of the Mpox disease.

We think the call is import­ant because as it is the case with some members of the Ghanaian public, they can take the rashes for granted and lat­er suffer harm that could have been prevented.

The call is also important because it forms part of pub­lic education and awareness creation about Mpox.

Besides, it conveys the mes­sage that every unusual signs that develop in or on the body must be of health concern and reported to the hospital.

The truth is that even though diseases call for man­agement and treatment as the case may be, health education is the best option as it plays a major role in prevention.

Even where the disease has already attacked someone, this patient and the family have to follow the management or treatment instructions, which constitute some educa­tion.

For this reason, we wish to join the La Nk­watanang Madina Munici­pal Directorate of GHS in educating the public about the Mpox.

Until last year when the World Health Organisa­tion (WHO) adopted the name Mpox, the disease used to be called monkey­pox.

According to the WHO, it sometimes becomes necessary to give new disease names to mini­mise unnecessary negative impact of names on trade, travel, tourism or animal welfare, and avoid causing offence to any cultural, social, national, regional, professional or ethnic groups.

However, the WHO states that the term “monkeypox” will remain a searchable term in the International Classifica­tion of Diseases (ICD) to match historic informa­tion.

According to the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which has partnered Ghana since 2007, the viral disease can cause rashes on the hands, feet, chest, face, or mouth or near the genitals and anus.

The rashes, which can initially look like pimples or blisters and may be painful or itchy, will go through several stages, including scabs, before healing.

Other symptoms in­clude fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes, exhaustion, muscle aches, backache, headache, respiratory symptoms like sore throat, nasal congestion or cough, and sometimes, people have flu-like symptoms before the rash, whereas others experience only the rash.

A person with Mpox can spread it to others from the time symptoms start until the rash has fully healed and a fresh layer of skin has formed.

It is said that some people have been found to have infec­tion but no symptoms.

We think those experiencing the symptoms should go to hospital immediately because of the negative impacts.

For instance, the rash can cause others to avoid your company, and if you are a trader such as a food vendor, the public can boycott your food.

The best thing to do now is to be vigilante to prevent close contact with people with the symptoms or go for test if you have been close or intimate with them and now have the disease.

This is because you may look fine within the disease’s three-week incubation period but find yourself suffering it after the period.

Note that even though there is no specific treatment approved for Mpox current­ly, antiviral medications used to treat smallpox and other conditions may help patients with it

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