Indonesia announces its first case of monkeypox

A man in Indonesia has tested positive for monkeypox, making him the country’s first confirmed case of the disease, authorities said late Saturday.

The 27-year-old, who lives in the capital, Jakarta, had returned from a trip abroad on August 8, Health Ministry spokesman Mohammad Syahril told a news conference.

The man started having symptoms five days later and went to see a doctor. He tested positive for monkeypox on Friday night and is now self-isolating at home, Syahril said.

“This is a self-limiting disease that will disappear after 20 days if the patient has no pre-existing disease,” Syahril said, adding that the government did not see the need to implement any community-level restrictions at the moment to contain the monkey pox

Indonesia, a large archipelago nation of more than 270 million people, has been on alert for the spread of monkeypox since the World Health Organization asked countries to increase their vigilance after the The United Kingdom experienced an outbreak in May.

Before then, the monkeypox virus was only endemic in several African countries.

Monkeypox is spread when people have close physical contact with an infected person’s lesions, clothing, or bedding. Sexual contact can amplify transmission.

Most people recover from monkeypox without treatment, but the lesions can be extremely painful.

More severe cases can lead to complications such as swelling of the brain and death.

Globally, more than 31,000 cases of monkeypox have been reported in nearly 90 countries. Last month, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a global emergency.

Monkey pox is not a brand new disease, but has been known since at least the 1970s and has been a serious challenge in Africa for years.

With only a limited global supply of vaccines, authorities are struggling to stop the spread of the disease.

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