Housemates, sexual contacts, or other close contacts of a person diagnosed with the virus are asked to stay home. GGD will likely require primarily people who have had sexual contact or skin contact with someone infected with the virus to go into quarantine, according to a RIVM spokesperson.
On Sunday morning, the RIVM said that people who have been within a meter and a half of a patient without protective clothing for more than 15 minutes must also be isolated. But the spokesman said Sunday afternoon that advice is now outdated. “Experts from the GGD are currently determining whether it is necessary to stay at home.” The recommendations will be discussed again next week.
On Op1 virologist Marion Copmans tells how the emerging monkeypox virus spreads.
After contact with a monkeypox patient, it may take 5 to 21 days for a person to develop symptoms. GGD remains in contact with people who therefore have to stay home as a precaution. They are required to take their temperature every day and to remain alert for symptoms.
The monkeypox virus is characterized by blisters on the skin. Before these blisters appear, people can experience fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, and headaches, among other things. How likely you are to get an infection if you’ve been close to someone before they develop symptoms remains to be seen. “It’s still too early to say that,” a RIVM spokesperson said.
Quarantine advice has been passed on to the GGDs, but has not yet been explained on the RIVM website. According to the spokesperson, the advice can still be changed. “This is very new, and there will be more coordination next week.”
As was the case with the coronavirus, the quarantine time can be shortened if a test after a few days shows that someone does not have the virus, it remains unclear. “It’s still under investigation after how many days you can test it.” Monkeypox virus now has a reporting obligation, which means that doctors who have tested or suspected to have had the virus must report it.
Two cases of monkeypox have been identified in the Netherlands. According to a RIVM spokesperson, the place where these people contracted the virus is still being investigated.
According to health services and experts, the spread of monkeypox should be stopped mainly by timely isolation of patients. Vaccines developed against the “natural” smallpox virus could also offer a solution.
The CDC writes that it is important for health care workers who breastfeed patients with the disease to wear personal protective equipment. This includes, for example, mouth masks and gloves. The CDC also advises people to wash their hands thoroughly after contact with people or animals that may be carrying the virus. “This can be done, for example, with soap and water, or with an alcohol-based sanitizer.”
This weekend, Minister Ernst Kuipers (Public Health) announced that people who are at high risk of coming into contact with a patient are getting the smallpox vaccine in the Netherlands. If the injection is given within four days, there is a good chance that someone will not get sick.
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