Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony is hopeful that Guyana can procure some emergency use antiviral treatments for Monkeypox as soon as they become available. At the moment these treatments are being used in places like the USA but are difficult to obtain.
There is currently no treatment for Monkeypox, but some antiviral medications in the USA which are emergency use-authorised to suppress the virus in patients who contract the disease. This is according to Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony.
“They are in limited supplies in the United States and they are being used under emergency use authorisation. So the medications that are currently used to suppress the virus are not readily available. But once it becomes available, we would ensure we have some of it available to patients here in Guyana.”
The Minister added that Guyana would have placed an order with the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) for the small pox vaccine which has been shown to be effective against Monkeypox and he expect that we will receive this by the end of September.
Minister Anthony has expanded the Covid Hotline to disseminate information on Monkeypox. It is a toll free Digicel number but a GTT number should be added soon to ensure any members of the public can access the line should they need to.
He is also urging Guyanese to remain cautious and take the necessary precautions to keep themselves safe.
“Generally persons would resolve within 14 days, maximum 21 days. Most people who get infected, within 21 days they would be fine. There are very very few examples where they can develop some infections and that is because of secondary bacterial infections.”
Symptoms to watch out for are Fever, Chills, Swollen lymph nodes, Exhaustion, Muscle aches and backache, headaches, and respiratory symptoms which may be experienced either before or after the rash appears, according to the CDC.
Recommended precautions include avoiding close, skin-to-skin contact or physical intimacy with people who have a rashes resembling Monkeypox patients, avoiding contact with objects and materials that a person with monkeypox has used and frequent hand washing.