The Department of Health (DOH) has detected, isolated, and is caring for a second and third confirmed case of Monkeypox in the country.
The second case is a 34-year-old Filipino national who had recent travel to countries with documented confirmed cases of Monkeypox. The case was tested and confirmed positive for Monkeypox via Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction or RT-PCR by the DOH Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) on August 18, 2022. To date, no close contact has been identified.
The third case is a 29-year-old Filipino national who had recently traveled to a country with documented confirmed cases of Monkeypox. The case was tested and confirmed positive for Monkeypox via RT-PCR by the DOH RITM on August 19, 2022. To date, 17 close contacts of the third case have been identified. Their details are being verified.
Case investigation and contact tracing is ongoing for both cases. They are also being cared for and are under strict isolation. Note that the two new cases are not related to each other, or to the first case. The first case has already recovered and been discharged from isolation as of August 6, 2022.
Monkeypox spreads mostly by skin-to-skin contact with those who have rashes or open lesions. It is not like COVID-19 that spreads mostly through the air. Investigation of recent Monkeypox cases in non-endemic countries indicates potential transmission through sexual contact. Monkeypox symptoms are mild, and the disease is rarely fatal.
Everyone can help prevent the spread of Monkeypox. Avoid close skin-to-skin contact with suspected cases, especially those with rashes or open wounds. Keep hands clean. Wear a face mask. Cover coughs using the elbow, and choose areas with good airflow. The DOH wishes to emphasize that anyone may get Monkeypox. If you have a travel history to countries with Monkeypox, and then have symptoms like fever, lymphadenopathy or “kulani”, and rashes, seek immediate medical attention. This will help hasten recovery.
“The Philippines is ready for Monkeypox. Our surveillance systems are detecting cases. Our hospitals and healthcare workers know and are implementing the latest protocols to care for cases and halt infection. Fast case investigation and contact tracing keeps the disease from spreading. Let us continue to be vigilant, to follow our health protocols, and to get the right information only from DOH and its partner agencies,” said Dr. Maria Rosario Singh-Vergeire, DOH Officer-in-Charge.