The Ministry of Health can confirm that Bermuda is today reporting its first confirmed case of monkeypox.
For reasons of confidentiality, the person cannot be identified. However, the patient is in isolation, and the Ministry of Health is investigating potential close contacts and will notify anyone who may have been exposed.
Acting Minister of Health, Jason Hayward, JP MP, said, “Monkeypox is rare, not life-threatening and Bermuda is well prepared to detect the disease and take suitable public health measures to prevent its spread. The Ministry of Health has provided guidance for primary care providers and the Bermuda Molecular Diagnostics and Research Laboratory (MDL) lab on sample handling. The Hospital also has appropriate isolation facilities to support treatment.
“The Ministry is also working with the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA). Our port health officials know how to screen and recognize possible cases and take appropriate action. Our healthcare professionals know how to identify, immediately isolate, and report cases to local and regional health authorities.”
Monkeypox is a rare infection that’s mainly found in parts of west or central Africa (often near rainforests but increasingly in some urban areas as well). It may take between 5 and 21 days for the first symptoms to appear. Usually, the virus causes flu-like symptoms: fever, chills, rash and lesions on the face or genitals. Most people recover within several weeks without requiring hospitalization.