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New South Wales Minister of Health Brad Hazard says the monkeypox case that authorities have likely discovered is not a major “cause for concern.”
“We just have to be on high alert,” he said, stressing the need for people traveling from countries where the virus has recently been detected to be vigilant.
These include the United States, Canada, France, Italy, Sweden, United Kingdom, Portugal and Spain.
“I wouldn’t panic,” agreed state health director Dr. Kerry Song.
She said those who had frequented “on-site sex venues” and large parties were particularly at risk.
He said further testing would confirm what health officials believe is a probable case of the virus which has so far never entered Australia.
The man, in his 40s, recently returned from Europe and visited a local doctor with his symptoms. He is going back home.
“Since we’ve never seen him in this country before, it’s quite remarkable that a GP managed to identify him during his presentation,” Hazzard said. “It’s pretty amazing.”
In Melbourne, health authorities in Victoria have confirmed a positive case of monkeypox in a man in his late 30s.
The man landed in Victoria from London in the early hours of May 16 on flight EY462.
He stopped in Abu Dhabi and had symptoms before the flight. A doctor identified the risk of monkeypox and the man immediately went into self-isolation.
His diagnosis was confirmed overnight. He was admitted to Alfred Hospital on Thursday and is expected to make a full recovery. He is isolated in a single room in the infectious diseases department.
Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said monkeypox was a serious disease and transmission could occur through fluids, lesions, respiratory transmission or close skin-to-skin contact.