Austria and Israel become latest countries to report monkeypox cases

WHO identifies some 80 cases globally with roughly 50 more suspected cases

Austria’s first case of monkeypox has been confirmed, Vienna’s health authority said on Sunday.

“Suspected case of pox viruses confirmed,” the health authority said on Twitter, adding that a male patient had tested positive for the viruses and given his symptoms it was safe to assume it was monkeypox.

The patient was taken to a city hospital on Sunday with fever and skin lesions, it said.

Israeli authorities also said they have detected their country’s first case of monkeypox in a man who returned from abroad.

Israeli officials said they were looking into other suspected cases.

Israel’s health ministry said the man was in a Tel Aviv hospital in a good condition. It called on anyone returning from abroad with fever and lesions to see a doctor.

Sharon Alroy-Preis, the head of public health services at the ministry, told Israeli Army Radio that medical teams were investigating other suspected monkeypox cases.

Israel’s case appeared to be the first identified in the Middle East.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has identified about 80 cases globally, and roughly 50 more suspected cases.

Cases of the smallpox-related disease have previously been seen only among people with links to central and West Africa.

But Britain, Spain, Portugal, Italy, the US, Sweden and Canada have all reported recent infections, mostly in young men who had not previously travelled to Africa.

France, Germany, Belgium and Australia have also identified cases.

The virus originates in primates and other wild animals and causes fever, body aches, chills and fatigue in most patients.

People with severe cases can develop a rash and lesions on the face, hands and other parts of the body. – AP/Reuters