Centre forms task force to monitor Monkeypox situation in country

New Delhi: Centre has formed a task force in the wake of Monkeypox cases in India to monitor and provide guidance to the government on the expansion of diagnostic facilities and to explore vaccination for the infection in the country.

The decision was taken during a meeting which was attended by Cabinet secretary, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, Additional Secretary (PMO) and other senior officials. India has reported four Monkeypox cases so far, three cases in Kerala and one in Delhi.

A youth in Kerala presenting monkeypox-like symptoms died, following which state Health Minister Veena George initiated a high-level inquiry.

A week ago, the WHO had declared the viral zoonotic disease as a global emergency. An antiviral agent developed for the treatment of smallpox has also been licensed for the treatment of monkeypox.