MARIGOT--Health authority Agence Regional de la Santé (ARS) confirmed on Monday a case of monkeypox has been identified in French St. Martin. Guadeloupe reported its first case on July 25.
The patient, who was placed in isolation, had been taken care of as soon as the first signs appeared, and his relatives were informed and are being monitored. ARS specifies that monkeypox virus can be transmitted by direct contact with skin lesions, or mucous membranes, of a sick person, as well as by droplets, including sneezes, sputum, saliva.
According to the ARS press release, sexual relations, with or without penetration, meet these conditions for contamination, and having several partners increases the risk of being exposed to the virus. In particular, direct contact with injured skin during sexual intercourse facilitates transmission. However, in most cases, symptoms are mild and can be treated at home.
They disappear in two to four weeks, and cause fever, headaches, the appearance of pimples on the face, body, palms and soles of the feet, which turn into crusts and then fall off. Vaccination, especially preventive vaccination, is possible against this disease.
One should contact Louis-Constant Fleming Hospital, by calling (0590) 52. 26. 74, which offers information and free vaccinations, in complete confidentiality, on Monday: 9:00am to 12:00pm and 3:00pm to 4:00pm, Tuesday: 9:00am to 4:00pm, Wednesday: 9:00am to 4:00pm, Thursday: 12:00pm to 7:00pm, and Friday 9:00am to 4:00pm.
Residents of St. Barts who wish to access the vaccination must for the time being contact the hospital in St. Martin. ARS considers that everyone’s vigilance is necessary to limit the spread of this new disease.