Monkeypox: virologist urges government to acquire smallpox vaccines

1 A virology professor, Sunday Omilabu, has urged the federal government to mount efforts to acquire smallpox vaccines in the fight against monkeypox.

2 Omilabu, who spoke in an interview broadcast on Arise TV on Sunday, said research had shown that the smallpox vaccine was effective against monkeypox virus.

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3 He said that monkeypox, which is a zonotic disease, is a virus transmitted from animals to humans.

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He said: “The government should negotiate the smallpox vaccine like other European countries are doing to prevent more cases of the virus.

“People over 60 are lucky because they got vaccinated against smallpox some time ago, but people who are now under 50 haven’t had the vaccine.

The public health expert said the capacity and structure used for COVID-19 should not be discounted, noting that it had helped detect cases of the virus.

“We have laboratory facilities to detect this virus and this is due to the structure put in place during COVID-19.

“These structures should be highly maintained,” he said.

Omilabu called for more clarification to educate people about monkeypox, adding that health workers should be well protected.

“Monkey pox is not as deadly as COVID-19, but it is very scary when you see people infected with the virus.

“People should be educated about the causes and how the virus spreads from animals to humans,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the World Health Organization (WHO) has recently classified the different variants of monkeypox into clades l, llA and llB to avoid social and cultural offence.

NewsSourceCredit: NAN