Number of monkeypox infections in Belgium rises to 17
The public health science institute Sciensano reports that the number of confirmed cases of monkeypox in Belgium has risen to 17. Ten of the infections can be linked to last month’s Darklands Fetish Festival in Antwerp or to travel to Portugal or Spain. However, the source of the 7 other infections still has to be confirmed.
Since the beginning of May cases of monkeypox have been reported in several countries in Europe and North America. Of the 17 cases confirmed in Belgium 11 are in Flanders, 5 in Brussels and 1 in Wallonia. So far no one that has become infected has been hospitalised.
The age of those infected ranges between 28 and 46 years old. According to Sciensano, at least ten infections are linked to the Darklands Festival in Antwerp at the beginning of last month or to travel to Portugal or Spain. The source of the most recent infections are still being investigated.
All 17 people that have become infected are homosexual men. However, anyone regardless of their age, gender or sexual orientation can become infected with monkeypox.
Those that become infected are obliged to self- isolate until the rash caused by the disease has disappeared. High-risk contacts do not need to be in isolation but should be extra careful around people whose immune system is compromised pregnant women and children.