STATEMENT – Update on monkeypox in Canada

STATEMENT – Update on Monkeypox in Canada – July 23, 2022

Canada News Wire

OTTAWA, Ontario, July 23, 2022

The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) is issuing this statement to provide an update on the ongoing response to monkeypox. PHAC continues to work closely with provinces and territories to coordinate from Canada strategic response to this situation.

OTTAWA (ON), July 23, 2022 /CNW/ – Enabled July 21, 2022, the World Health Organization (WHO) has convened a second meeting of its International Health Regulations (IHR) Emergency Committee to assess the ongoing international outbreak of monkeypox. On July 23the director general of the WHO has published a statement declaring the global outbreak of monkeypox a public health emergency of international concern (USPPI).

Since the beginning of the epidemic, the government of from Canada the top priority has been to protect the health of all Canadians. The government recognizes the determination of the WHO and will continue to work with the provinces and territories as it has done since the start of the monkeypox outbreak.

PHAC continues to work closely with international, provincial and territorial health partners to gather information on this evolving outbreak and to assess the possible risk of exposure to monkeypox virus in Canada. Canada will continue to work with WHO and international partners to strengthen the global response to the current monkeypox outbreak.

To date, there are 681 confirmed cases of monkeypox in five provinces of Canada and these numbers are expected to continue to rise as the outbreak evolves. Since July, 1stwe have also seen a doubling of cases to date, the first case in a woman and the first cases in Saskatchewan.

The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) has published recommendations for use of Imvamune®, a vaccine approved by Health Canada for immunization against monkeypox. To date, the government of Canada has deployed over 70,000 doses of vaccines to provinces and territories and continues to work actively with provinces in managing their public health responses. The government also provides treatment for case management, at the request of provinces and territories, and works to ensure the future national supply of vaccines and therapeutics.

Provincial and territorial public health authorities have launched their monkeypox vaccination campaigns and have begun vaccinating most-at-risk populations. While vaccination is meant to provide protection, a successful response to a monkeypox outbreak relies on a variety of public health measures, including targeted public health education, providing people with the information they need to make informed choices. Everyone in Canada it is reminded that they can help reduce the risk of infection or spread of the monkeypox virus by:

  • stay home and limit contact with others if you have symptoms or as recommended by your healthcare provider;

  • avoid close physical contact, including sexual contact, with a person who is infected with or may have been exposed to monkeypox virus;

  • maintain good hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette; and

  • clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects in your home, especially after having visitors

To reduce the overall risk of becoming infected with and spreading monkeypox virus while we learn more about the virus, PHAC recommends people Canada use condoms and practice safer sex. Having fewer sexual partners, especially anonymous partners, even when they don’t have symptoms, can also reduce your risk of infection.

Panels of scientific experts continue to be convened to advise on monkeypox, including potential research priorities and how to manage potential risks to Canada. Canada Continue to participate in WHO-sponsored events to discuss knowledge gaps and research priorities on monkeypox, given recent outbreaks of the disease in countries around the world.

PHAC continues to take action to control monkeypox in Canadaincluding:

  • Continued activation of its Health Portfolio Operations Center and Incident Management Structure at Level 2, as well as continued activation of the National Microbiology Laboratory (NML) Operations Center at Level 2 to support the response to the monkeypox, perform tests for jurisdictions that do not perform their own;

  • Work with provinces and territories to support decentralized testing by providing testing materials and protocols to Canadian and international laboratory partners. With the support of the government of Canadaprovincial and territorial public health and health care systems conduct case investigations and outbreak management while the NML continues to support national outbreak investigations and management;

  • Working with stakeholders, including non-governmental organizations and affected communities, Chief Medical Officers of Health through the Pan-Canadian Public Health Network and international partners/networks, to reach out to high-risk populations;

  • Provide public health officials and stakeholders with the guidance and tools needed to help manage monkeypox cases;

  • On July 21, 2022the government of Canada announcement it provides funding to help community organizations in areas currently hardest hit by the monkeypox outbreak reach at-risk populations with timely information on how to protect themselves and help slow the spread of monkeypox;

  • Provide leadership to help improve global understanding of the evolution of the monkeypox epidemic, including mobilizing experts and sharing available scientific evidence to inform national and global responses; and

  • Provide regular updates on the monkeypox outbreak through public reports and on Canada.ca/monkeypox as new information becomes available.

As the monkeypox epidemic evolves, the Government of Canada will continue to work with the WHO, international partners and Canadian provinces and territories to determine the best courses of action to limit the spread of monkeypox in Canada. PHAC will continue to provide regular public updates as new information becomes available.

SOURCE Public Health Agency of Canada