24 May 2022, Cairo, Egypt – The first case of monkeypox in WHO’s Eastern Mediterranean Region has been reported by the Ministry of Health and Prevention in the United Arab Emirates as countries continue to scale up detection and response capacities for this viral disease. The patient is currently receiving treatment and additional suspected cases are being investigated.

As of 23 May, 131 confirmed cases have been reported from 18 countries across the different WHO regions, with an additional 106 suspected cases being investigated. The confirmed cases are reported from non-endemic countries that do not usually report monkeypox outbreaks. There are no associated deaths to date.

“More suspected cases are being reported in our Region but not yet confirmed. In anticipation of additional confirmed cases in the Region, WHO urges countries to report against the WHO case definition and share information on cases reported on a timely basis. We are committed to providing information for health ministries, health workers, communities and people to inform them of monkeypox and how to protect themselves and their loved ones,” said Dr Ahmed Al-Mandhari, WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean.

As the situation rapidly evolves, WHO’s Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean is working closely with countries to scale up preparedness and response plans for monkeypox. The Regional Office continues to work closely with all countries to ensure that potential cases are quickly identified, tested and responded to.

Currently, the Regional Office is working to streamline laboratory support at the national level in all countries while strengthening

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