ADDIS ABABA– The African continent has so far reported 2,101 monkeypox cases and 75 people have died due to the virus across the continent since the beginning of 2022, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) disclosed.

Out of the 2,101 monkeypox cases that have been reported in Africa, some 1,818 of them are suspected cases while 283 are confirmed cases, said Ahmed Ogwell, the acting director of Africa CDC, during a weekly briefing Thursday.

Figures from the Africa CDC showed that 70 new monkeypox cases have been reported by three African countries during the past week.

Ghana reported 16 confirmed cases, while Nigeria reported 16 confirmed and 37 suspected cases.

Liberia reported one confirmed case. Africa CDC, the healthcare agency of the African Union, said the number of new monkeypox cases reported during the past week registered a 7 percent decrease as compared to last week’s briefing. Africa’s monkeypox case fatality rate currently stands at 3.6 percent.

On Monday, the Africa CDC recommended its members for boosting surveillance and contact tracing efforts against monkeypox disease.

It called on African countries to strengthen laboratory diagnostic capacities and genomic sequencing capacity for monkeypox.

The announcement came days after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency of international concern on July 23.

The Africa CDC also called on members to stockpile vaccines needed to deal with monkeypox cases and urged them to develop and distribute both general and tailored risk communication messages for general communities as well as vulnerable population groups. – Xinhua