SA records 2 more monkeypox cases

The Department of Health urges citizens to remain calm, saying that the new cases are not a call for concern.

The Department of Health is appealing to citizens who have been in close contact with known or suspected patients of monkeypox disease, also known as Mpox, to go to their nearest health facility.

This is after the National Institute for Communicable Diseases detected two more cases of Mpox this week at Addington and St Augustine Hospitals in Durban, KZN.

“The preliminary case finding report has revealed that the two recent cases had contact with the other previously confirmed case in the province, and this suggests that there is a local transmission of the disease, which could potentially lead to a larger outbreak in the province,” the department said in a statement.

This brings the total number of laboratory-confirmed infections in the country to four, with three in KZN and one in Gauteng.

According to the data, all the patients are South African males – in their mid to late 30s.

The department said close contact with lesions, sexual contact, body fluids, respiratory droplets and contaminated materials such as bedding transmit the Mpox virus from one person to another.

The incubation period of Mpox is usually from six to 13 days but can range from five to 21 days.

“The health officials rely on transparency and co-operation from cases or patients for contact tracing and case finding to determine the rate of transmission of this infectious virus at community level.”

Honesty applauded

The department said they are pleased by the patients’ honesty and courage during the investigation process and thanked them for assisting officials in tracing suspected cases who also tested positive.

“It is through transparency of both confirmed and suspected cases that government can prevent further transmission and avoidable deaths.”

Meanwhile, the department in collaboration with various stakeholders in the sector is intensifying epidemiology and surveillance, and risk communication and community engagement activities.

“These will also help to address social stigma, which contributes to people’s decision not to openly speak out because they suspect communities will not accept them due to their health conditions.”

In most cases, the department said stigma contributes to the spread of the virus thereby making the outbreak and transmission worse.


Some of the common symptoms of Mpox include a rash, which may last for two to four weeks, fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, low energy and swollen glands.

“The painful rash looks like blisters or sores, and can affect the face, palms of the hands, soles of the feet, groin, genital and/or anal regions,” the department explained.

However, the department urged the public not to panic because the situation remains under control, and added that they will keep the public informed of the situation. –

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