Bahrain opens registration for monkeypox vaccine

The kingdom has been praised by the World Health Organisation for its preparedness against the virus

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Bahrain has opened registration for the monkeypox vaccine on a voluntary basis.

The kingdom has a "limited stock" of the vaccine, which will be distributed to priority groups, including front-line health workers and those at high risk of exposure, the Ministry of Health said.

Coming shipments will be dedicated to citizens and residents who wish to take the vaccine, free of charge.

Bahrain has been praised by the World Health Organisation for its preparedness against monkeypox.

“All Gulf countries have the technical capacity to do the testing for monkeypox and I’m really happy to see that the GCC health systems have been ready from the first day they heard about this disease,” said Dr Ahmed Al Mandhari, director of the WHO's Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean.

“Bahrain is one of these countries that have moved in a very strong manner based on the wealth of rich experiences they have had with Covid-19 and has been participating actively in all our engagements.”

The virus originates in primates and other wild animals and causes fever, body aches, chills and fatigue in most patients. People with severe cases can develop a rash and lesions on the face, hands and other parts of the body, but the virus is usually not deadly.

The smallpox-related disease was commonly found in parts of central and west Africa, before spreading to different parts of the world.

The WHO last month declared monkeypox a global emergency, to ensure that the world takes the ongoing outbreaks seriously.

The Bahraini ministry said it has put in place measures related to testing, isolation and treatment, based on global WHO recommendations and standards.

The Minister of Health, Dr Jalila bint Sayed Jawad, said those who tested positive for the virus or were in contact with an infected person must isolate for 21 days.

Updated: August 05, 2022, 12:29 PM