THE DEPARTMENT of Public Health Mid West has confirmed that the first cases of Monkeypox have been reported in the region.
However, less than five cases of the virus have been reported in the last number of weeks. The exact number is not being released for data protection reasons.
According to the most-recent data from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre, there are currently 44 cases of the virus in Ireland with more than 6,900 cases confirmed in Europe, America and worldwide.
Monkeypox is a rare viral infection which usually leads to a mild illness that lasts a few weeks. Some people with the virus can become very sick particularly those with a week immune system, young children and those who are pregnant.
It is passed on through very close contact with someone who has the virus, via contact with their rash or coughs and sneezes.
Sexual contact can also result in the spread. Anyone, regardless of their sexual orientation, can catch the virus.
Symptoms to be alert for include a new rash or blisters that can be on any part of the body particularly, the face, mouth, hands, feet, genitals or bum.
Fever, headaches, swollen glands, aches and pains can also be symptoms.
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