The Commission for Infectious Diseases is concerned by the spread of the monkeypox virus and the cases outside of its endemic areas in Central and West Africa. The situation is being carefully monitored, but there is no room for panic because this epidemic is in no way identical or proportional to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, said Commission spokesperson Zlate Mehmedovic on Wednesday.

He said that the Commission discussed the definition of clinical pathways for monitoring, screening, and diagnosis of patients who will eventually be infected with monkeypox for the health system to be ready and, as he said, to respond to a possible epidemic in our country in the best way possible.

The Institute of Public Health (IPH) already contacted the World Health Organization to procure special equipment to diagnose the virus, and the WHO is in talks to procure the necessary therapy.

At the meeting, we agreed to monitor the situation closely and provide everything necessary for the timely diagnosis and treatment of any patients who would be in our country. Monkeypox, although present in the world for almost half a century, has been very rare in this area and, practically, the diagnostic and therapeutic procedures that are available are somewhat scarce in this part of Europe. So all countries are currently having problems providing quality diagnostics and treatment to their patients. However, the Institute of Public Health last week contacted the World Health Organization to provide special diagnostic kits for PCR testing for monkeypox, Mehmedovic told a news conference.

Information on the symptoms and how the monkeypox is transmitted has already been published on the website of the IPH.

There is no room for panic. We are worried, but we regularly monitor the situation and if there are any changes we will intervene in time, added the spokesperson of the Commission for Infectious Diseases.