A 57-year-old man from Region Four is Guyana's first monkeypox patient and is being isolated at the Infectious Diseases Hospital in Liliendaal, East Coast Demerara (E.C.D). The man has no recent travel history and he showed signs and symptoms over the weekend, a PCR test conducted today confirmed the presence of the monkeypox virus locally. Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony said persons who were in contact with the 57-year-old man is currently in quarantine and has assured that once the cases are managed, persons would not get sick.
"With this case, we are taking all the necessary measures and I want the public to know that we have diagnostic capabilities, we have our labs that are prepared, we have a lot of people who have been trained." "I don't want people to panic, because monkeypox is not something that is readily transmissible, you have to be very very very in close contact with that person and with the lesions on their skin and the liquids that come off from those lesions before you can actually get sick." However, the Health Minister is urging persons to take all precautionary measures even though you can only become infected by close skin-to-skin contact with an already infected person. Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr. Narine Singh said, "Transmission is by close to close contact, so if you know someone who is infected, the idea is to stay away from them, avoid close contact with them and that will actually prevent them from getting the transmission." The World Health Organisation recently declared monkeypox a global health emergency and cases have been reported in more than 90 countries globally.