Joe Biden warned Sunday on the sidelines of his Asian tour that the impact of the spread of monkeypox, which has been detected in a dozen European countries, as well as Australia, Canada and the United States, could have “the following consequences”.
• Also read: Monkeypox: New cases every day in the UK
• Also read: Ukraine and COVID will weigh on the World Health Assembly
The American president, who wanted to leave South Korea for Japan, said on Sunday that he had not been fully briefed by American health officials on the United States’ “exposure level” to the virus.
“But it’s something everyone should be concerned about,” he told reporters before boarding Air Force One for the flight to Tokyo.
“If it spread, it would matter,” he added.
Monkeypox, a less dangerous cousin of smallpox, eradicated some forty years ago, causes a high fever and quickly progresses to a scabbing rash, especially on the face.
There is no treatment, but this viral infection will heal on its own.
At least eight European countries had reported cases as of Friday, according to the WHO, as well as Australia, Canada and the United States, countries where its presence is unusual. It is usually present in 11 African countries and is considered “endemic”.