Public Health Challenges in the Context of the Global Spread of Mpox Infections

Manju Rahi Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases, Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi, India;
Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research, Ghaziabad, India;
National Institute of Malaria Research, New Delhi, India;

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Sam Joy Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases, Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi, India;

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Amit Sharma Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research, Ghaziabad, India;
National Institute of Malaria Research, New Delhi, India;
Molecular Medicine, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, New Delhi, India

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ABSTRACT.

The declaration of the ongoing mpox (formerly monkeypox) outbreak by the WHO as a public health emergency of international concern has put global attention on mpox disease. As of December 4, 2022, a total of 80,221 mpox cases had been confirmed from 110 countries, with a major proportion of cases being reported from previously non-endemic countries. The current global emergence and spread of the disease has highlighted the challenges and the need for efficient public health preparedness and response. There are several challenges posed in the current mpox outbreak, ranging from epidemiological factors to diagnostic and socio-ethnic issues. These challenges may be circumvented with proper intervention measures such as strengthening surveillance, robust diagnostics, clinical management plans, intersectoral collaboration, firm prevention plans, capacity building, addressing stigma and discrimination against vulnerable groups, and ensuring equitable access to treatments and vaccines. To address the above challenges in the wake of the current outbreak, it is essential to understand the gaps and plug them with effective countermeasures.

Author Notes

Address correspondence to Manju Rahi, Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases, Indian Council of Medical Research, V. Ramalingaswami Bhawan, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi 110029, India. E-mail: drmanjurahi@gmail.com

Authors’ addresses: Manju Rahi, Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases, Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi, India, Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research, Ghaziabad, India, and National Institute of Malaria Research, New Delhi, India, E-mail: drmanjurahi@gmail.com. Sam Joy, Division of Epidemiology and Communicable Diseases, Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi, India, E-mail: drjoysam@gmail.com. Amit Sharma, Molecular Medicine, Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research, Ghaziabad, India, National Institute of Malaria Research, New Delhi, India, and Molecular Medicine, International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, New Delhi, India, E-mail: amit.icgeb@gmail.com.

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