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Monkeypox patient flees Jamaican hospital

Monkeypox patient flees Jamaican hospital
Health authorities investigating another suspected case of monkeypox - FP

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KINGSTON, Jamaica – The Police have been called in to investigate an incident in which the island’s first confirmed case of Monkeypox, absconded the health facility where he had been put into isolation pending his recovery.

In a release, the Ministry said that the patient – who presented to the public health system on July 5, having arrived in Jamaica some five days earlier from the United Kingdom – left through a bathroom window of the facility and had a car waiting.

“Monkeypox is a viral disease that can be transmitted from person to person. It is therefore important that anyone with knowledge of the patient’s whereabouts contact the police so that he can be returned to isolation, pending the resolution of his illness,” said Minister of Health, Dr Christopher Tufton.

Symptoms of Monkeypox include fever, intense headache, swelling of the lymph nodes, back pain, muscle ache, lack of energy, and/or rash.

The virus enters the body through broken skin (even if not visible), the respiratory tract, or the mucous membranes (eyes, nose, or mouth). The incubation period is between 5 and 21 days.

Members of the public who experience fever, intense headache, muscle aches and/or rash on the skin, must immediately isolate and call ahead to their health centre or doctor before visiting.

The Ministry of Health says all members of the public should wear a mask, frequently wash hands and practice physical distancing, as part of infection prevention and control efforts. (CMC)