Africa tourism

Laos monitors monkeypox among tourists

VIENTIANE, May 29: Following a World Health Organization (WHO) report that cases of monkeypox have emerged in several countries, health authorities in Laos are on high alert, reports Laotian time.

According to Dr. Lattanaxay Phetsouvanh, director general of the Department of Communicable Disease Control, health officials will screen international arrivals and request travel history.

Travelers who have visited countries where the virus is endemic, such as Central and West Africa, will be denied entry to Laos.

Dr Lattanaxay said human cases of monkeypox have been reported outside of Africa, including in Europe, the US, Israel and the UK, and have been linked to international travel or animals imported.

Immediate steps are being taken to focus on providing accurate information to those most at risk of infection to prevent further spread.

According to the WHO, the available data suggests that human-to-human transmission occurs among people in close physical contact with symptomatic cases.

Thailand announced it set up an emergency operations center earlier this week to monitor the spread of the monkeypox virus.

A Thai medical center has also started developing a Monkeypox test using genetic data provided by Portugal and Belgium.