WiRED Releases Monkeypox Module

Responding to Emerging Disease

By Allison Kozicharow; Edited by Elizabeth Fine

World Health Organization (WHO) official Dr. Hans Kluge recently called for urgent action to control fast-increasing cases of monkeypox, adding that it posed a real risk to public health.

What is monkey pox? Monkeypox is a viral zoonotic infectious disease caused by a virus called Orthopoxvirus. Monkeypox is transmitted to humans from coming in contact with sores, scabs and oral fluids from infected people or from infected animals, most commonly rodents.

WiRED International just completed a health education module on monkeypox for health professionals and paraprofessionals. The module provides a general introduction to monkeypox, its emergence, its mode of transmission and its signs and symptoms and demonstrates how to clinically identify monkeypox and learn about its prevention and control.

Characterized by a severe rash, monkeypox is rarely fatal, but symptoms can be painful and leave permanent scarring from the pox. However, the disease can cause serious illness or death in children under age eight, people with weakened immune systems or a history of eczema and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Since May 2022, WHO and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continue to track the monkeypox outbreaks closely. Monkeypox is endemic in West and Central Africa, but the latest cases have been confirmed in several countries that don’t normally report monkeypox, including the United States.

It is WiRED’s policy to react swiftly to new global health emergencies with accurate, reliable information that discusses critical elements of emerging diseases. In the past we have created and released modules in early response to the advent of Ebola, Zika, COVID-19 and other diseases with regional and global impact. Indeed, getting reliable, peer-reviewed information into the hands of ordinary people and health professionals is a vital part of our mission.

WiRED will continue to report on monkeypox as new information arises.

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Monkeypox Quiz

Questions Taken from WiRED’s Monkeypox Module Quizzes

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How did monkeypox get its name?

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Monkeypox typically lasts for how long?

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True or false: The monkeypox virus can cross the placenta from the mother to her fetus.

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How can the monkeypox virus be spread?

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