No monkeypox cases detected in South Africa: NICD

NICD experts have given an update on the infectious disease since two cases were confirmed by WHO in the United Kingdom on 13 May.

Monkeypox belongs to the Poxviridae family of viruses, which includes smallpox. Picture: CDC/Cynthia S. Goldsmith

CAPE TOWN - The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) says there are no cases of monkeypox detected in South Africa.

NICD experts have given an update on the infectious disease since two cases were confirmed by the World Health Organization (WHO) in the United Kingdom on 13 May.

Medical experts say the disease is similar to smallpox but less severe.

The WHO explains the viral zoonotic disease occurs primarily in tropical rainforest areas of Central and West Africa, but cases have recently been diagnosed in Europe, Australia, Canada and America.

Doctor Jacquiline Weyer from the Centre for Emerging Zoonotic and Parasitic Diseases shared the latest data on the monkeypox outbreak.

“So the goal for us to really perform effective surveillance through case investigation and contact tracing.”

Head of the Centre for Respiratory Diseases and Meningitus professor Cheryl Cohen shared data South Africa's current resurgence in COVID-19 cases driven by the Omicron coronavirus variant.

“The numbers have started to go down; there was a 27% decrease in cases and what is more heartening is that these numbers are much lower than the previous waves.”