INCREASED MONKEYPOX SURVEILLANCE

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INCREASED MONKEYPOX SURVEILLANCE

The Epidemiology Department within the Ministry of Health, Wellness and Elderly Affairs
received an alert by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of a crew
member on a flight which came into St. Lucia and he has since tested positive for the
Monkeypox virus. The crew member did not disembark from the flight. As obtained with
infectious diseases, the required contact tracing process is currently being undertaken by the
contact tracing team within the Ministry of Health. All identified contacts of the case shall
be contacted by the Ministry of Health and placed in quarantine and monitored over a
twenty-one day period. With the significant increase in the number of cases of Monkeypox which have been
confirmed globally in recent weeks, Saint Lucia has strengthened the capacity to manage
individuals who are either suspect or confirmed cases. The protocols which are in place for
COVID-19 have been modified to allow for the management of Monkeypox. Any person
exposed to Monkeypox shall be placed in quarantine and monitored by the Home
Monitoring Team of clinicians. The capacity for testing for the Monkeypox virus exists
within the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) and as such, samples will be taken
from any individual who exhibits symptoms while in quarantine/isolation and shall be sent
directly to CARPHA for testing. The Victoria Hospital has assigned a dedicated ward
exclusively for the care and management of anyone who receives a positive test result. The
management of Monkeypox is done by treating symptoms and there is the capacity in- country to effectively undertake this.

The public is reminded that Monkeypox has not been confirmed in Saint Lucia to date. As a
precautionary measure, the Ministry of Health requests that anyone with a recent travel history to
self-monitor for the onset of flu-like symptoms including fever, rash, headache and muscle ache. If any of these symptoms are observed, it is necessary to seek medical attention immediately. The Ministry of Health shall be providing the public with further updates as information
becomes available. For more information, please contact the Of ice of the Chief Medical Of icer or the

Epidemiology Unit at 468-5309/468-5317 respectively

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