Monkeypox: More than 1,000 cases now recorded in the UK

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Monkeypox tests  (REUTERS)
Monkeypox tests (REUTERS)

More than 1,000 cases of monkeypox have now been recorded in the UK with more than half in London.

The UK Health Security Agency, in its latest statistics, said 1,076 confirmed cases had now been recorded - a rise of 166 cases from the last reported data on June 24.

1,035 of the cases are in England with 659 confirmed in London though that figure may be higher as addresses are not available for every case.

There were 27 cases in Scotland, five in Northern Ireland and nine in Wales.

Monkeypox is usually found in West and Central Africa and between 2018 and 2021 there were only seven reported cases in the UK.

The first cases from the new outbreak were confirmed in England on May 6 and the outbreak has mainly been found in gay, bisexual, and men who have sex with men.

Speaking before the latest figures were announced, Health Secretary Sajid Javid said monkeypox posed a “very low risk” but said vaccines will be offered to gay and bi-sexual men.

“We’re responding to monkeypox, but it’s still very low risk so I don’t think there’s anything in general for people to be concerned about. The UK Health Security Agency, with its partners, I think has given a very robust response.”

He said the government had “plenty” of vaccines and was “using them in a targeted way to help protect those that are most vulnerable but also the health workers that are supporting them”.

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