Spain reports 2nd monkey pox death


MADRID — Spain has reported a second death in as many days from monkey pox, the health ministry said on Saturday.

These are believed to be the first confirmed deaths from monkeypox since its outbreak in the European Union. The ministry did not give any details about the deceased. It reported its first death from the disease on Friday.

The global monkeypox outbreak has seen more than 21.00 cases in nearly 80 countries since May. There are 75 suspected deaths in Africa, mainly in Nigeria and Congo, where a more deadly form of monkey pox is spreading than in the West. Brazil also reported a death related to monkey pox on Friday.

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On Friday, Spain’s health ministry reported that 4,298 people were infected with the virus, making it the leading European country for monkey pox cases. Of that total, there were about 3,500 cases of men who had had sex with other men. Only 64 were women.

The ministry said 120 need hospital care.

Health authorities are administering 5,300 vaccines that Spain has received from the joint EU vaccine purchase program. Health professionals say that’s far less than the number needed to cover the high-risk groups.

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Monkeypox has been endemic to parts of Africa for decades. The jump to Europe and North America was linked by experts to two raves in Belgium and Spain.

It mainly spreads through skin-to-skin contact, but it can also be transmitted through sheets used by someone with monkey pox. Symptoms include fever, body aches, chills, fatigue, and hives. The disease has been relatively mild in many men. But people can be contagious for weeks and the lesions can be extremely painful.

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