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Health Ministry sets up Special Response team to advise on Monkeypox

Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony (Photo: DPI)

The Ministry of Health has created a Special Monkeypox Committee that will serve to advice healthcare professionals on potential monkeypox cases.

Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony explained that medical facilities across Guyana are adequately trained to detect signs and symptoms of monkeypox.

“Once they have that suspicion they can then call, we have set up a committee with a number of specialists including dermatologists, infectious disease specialists and so forth so that if they have any doubts they can call this committee or call this response team that can aid them in making this diagnosis.”

This follows months of capacity building of local healthcare facilities done by the Ministry of Health to ensure Guyana would be prepared in the event of an outbreak.

“We have sent persons to Jamaica where PAHO/WHO ran a training for laboratory staff from around the Caribbean and so our staff went to Jamaica, they received that training, came back and they have in turn trained a lot of people in the country. So we have capacity to be able to detect the virus.”

The Ministry also purchased the relevant laboratory reagents which ensured that Guyana is able to detect monkeypox by testing samples using the PCR test.

Guyana has confirmed one isolated case of Monkeypox from a 57-year-old man residing in region 4. He has been quarantined and remains in stable condition. Minister Anthony said the patient should be discharged in about 14 days.

President Irfaan Ali also noted that no restrictions will be put in place as they are not necessary at this time.

Minister also said that given the nature of the disease and how it spreads, he does not expect many cases in Guyana.

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