Mumbai Issues Alert, Keeps 28-Bed Ward Ready For Suspected Cases

In view of the surging monkeypox cases in several countries, the Mumbai civic body has prepared a 28-bed ward ready at city’s Kasturba Hospital to isolate suspected patients.

As per Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) officials, there has been no report of any suspected or confirmed case of Monkeypox in Mumbai so far.

In an advisory issued about the zoonotic viral disease, the BMC said that the airport authorities are screening passengers from endemic and non-endemic countries showing outbreaks, News18 reported.

“For the isolation of suspected patients, a separate ward of 28 beds has been kept at the Kasturba Hospital. Their samples will be sent for testing to the National Institute of Virology (NIV) in Pune,” the BMC advisory said.

On May 20, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya directed the National Center for Disease Control and the ICMR to watch the situation closely. All health facilities in the city have been informed to notify and refer any suspected Monkeypox case to the Kasturba Hospital.

What Is Monkeypox?

As per BMC’s advisory, Monkeypox is a viral zoonotic disease, occurring primarily in tropical rainforest areas of central and west Africa and is occasionally exported to other regions.

“The disease typically presents clinically with fever, rash and swollen lymph nodes and may lead to many medical complications,” the advisory stated.

It is usually a self-limited disease with symptoms that last from two to four weeks. According to BMC, severe cases can occur and the case fatality rate may vary from 1-10 per cent. Monkeypox can be transmitted from animals to humans and human to human.

How Does It Spread?

The civic body’s advisory stated that the virus enters the body through broken skin, respiratory tract or the mucous membranes (eyes, mouth or nose).

The animal-to-human transmission may occur by a scratch or bite, bushmeat preparations, direct contact with body fluids or lesion material, or indirect contact with lesion material, like contaminated bedding, it said.

The human-to-human transmission is thought to occur mainly through large respiratory droplets that require prolonged close contact.

Monkeypox has an incubation period of 7 to 14 days, but can range from 5 to 21 days, and the person is generally not contagious during this period. “An infected person may transmit monkeypox from 1-2 days before the rash appears and remain contagious till all the scabs fall off,” the advisory stated.

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