New York, 2 June 2022 (TDI): Nearly 550 confirmed Monkeypox cases were reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) from thirty countries not endemic to the Monkeypox virus.

These remarks were delivered by the Director-General WHO, Dr.Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. He was delivering opening remarks at the Covid-19 Media briefing on 1 June.

Dr. Tedros said that the sudden increase in reported cases of Monkeypox suggests that the transmission of Monkeypox has stayed undetected for some time. He highlighted that most of the cases had been reported in same-sex relationships in men.

He underscored the role of sexual health clinics working hard to communicate the risks and prevention measures of Monkeypox in their communities.

monkeypox cases
Large-sized blisters appear on the body of the affected people along with mild to medium symptoms.

He added that WHO is urging affected countries to widen their surveillance and look for causes in the broader community. Physical contact with the affected people can result in the transmission of this virus.

While highlighting the four key priority areas on Monkeypox, Dr. Tedros said that the WHO aims to provide accurate information to vulnerable groups, prevent further spread, ensure frontline health workers, and advance our understanding of this disease.

Mandate of WHO

While emphasizing the mandate of WHO, the Director-General said that accountability, efficiency, and transparency are critical features of WHO programs.

In addition,  the WHO chief said the Assembly adopted a landmark resolution to increase assessed contributions, which will decrease to 16% by the end of the decade.

He added that this change would give WHO the flexibility and predictability to plan for long-term programming in countries. In addition, it will attract and retain the people required to deliver those programs.

The Assembly underscored the importance of strengthening WHO’s preparedness and response to health emergencies, including IHR and better architecture. The changes include targeted amendments to the International Health Regulations.

COVID-19 aftermath

Dr. Tedros highlighted the global decline in the reported cases of Covid-19; however, he emphasized regular testing to know the status of the prevalence of the disease in the country.

Furthermore, he expressed his concern over the increasing trend of reported cases and deaths in America, Africa, and the Western Pacific region.

He stressed that all countries maintain testing and sequencing services. He also encouraged governments to vaccinate ‘at risk’ groups, health workers, and older people.

Severe pressure on the healthcare system

While highlighting the severe pressure on the healthcare system due to economic crises, conflict, and socio-political challenges, Dr. Terdos said that WHO has increased its presence in Ukraine.

The organization has also accelerated its actions in countries hosting displaced people.

Since the onset of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, WHO has successfully delivered 515 metric tonnes of medical supplies and equipment to affected people.

The organization has also trained 1300 Health workers in trauma surgery, burns, chemical exposure, and mass casualties.

Meanwhile, WHO has verified 269 attacks on healthcare workers in Ukraine, killing 76 people and injuring 59.

He shared the dire situation of healthcare in Tigray and informed the Assembly about the risk of shutting down Tigray’s only referral hospital.

He added that lack of fuel, ambulances, and basic medical supplies are the prime reasons. Also, the staff of the hospital keeps on collapsing due to hunger.

The Ayder hospital in Mekelle serves 6 million people and is responsible for performing thousands of surgeries and deliveries every year.

Meanwhile, Dr. Tedros highlighted the dire situation in Africa. He said that the risk of famine and malnutrition is severely affecting 15 to 20 million people in Kenya, Somalia, and Ethiopia. Populations in Djibouti, Eritrea, Uganda, South Sudan, and Sudan.

Tens of thousands of families are being forced to leave their homes searching for food, water, and pasture.

He also shared his concerns over the under-immunized population and the risk of transmitting viruses and Infectious in people with little or no access to health services.

World Tobacco Day
While highlighting the global impacts due to the increase in CO2 levels, Dr. Terdos said that the tobacco industry costs 600 hundred million trees.
In addition, it contributes to 84 million tonnes of CO2 emissions, 200 hundred thousand hectares of land, and 22 billion tonnes of water loss.


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