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End of COVID + MonkeyPox in the US

person takes out the covid mask

It has finally happened. The end of COVID as a public health emergency of international concern is now a reality. But, what does this mean for travelers? What changes await us?

In this post, we’ll answer all these questions. Plus, we’ll also cover the latest Monkeypox outbreak in the US.

Let’s begin!

End of COVID as a Public Health Emergency

The WHO recently reported positive news about the COVID-19 pandemic. In a meeting held on May 4, the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee observed a significant decrease in:

  • COVID-19 fatal cases
  • Hospitalizations
  • ICU admissions

According to the report, these declines are related to the high levels of immunity to the virus that people developed since the pandemic hit in 2020.

As a result, the WHO prevention policy will focus on managing the virus over the long run. What does this mean? COVID-19 will be considered an ongoing health issue, but not a public health emergency of international concern anymore.

But, what effect will this news have on COVID prevention? How will this affect us travelers?

Well, so far, the WHO advises that countries must continue to follow temporary recommendations. These include:

  • Preparing for future health emergency events that may happen
  • Integrating COVID-19 vaccines into routine vaccination programs
  • Continue reporting data to better understand the illness
  • Updating current national regulations in order to authorize medical countermeasures that may be needed in the future
  • Engaging communities in infodemic and prevention programs
  • Continue lifting international travel restrictions related to COVID-19, as many countries have done
  • Continue to support research to improve COVID vaccines with broad applicability, such as the Indian vaccine.

Summarizing, the WHO’s latest report acknowledges the progress made since the beginning of the pandemic and the global commitment to public health. The organization urges countries to focus on long-term virus management and continue working together to ensure global health and safety.

Monkeypox in the US

The US has seen a rise in Monkeypox cases in the state of Chicago, with some affecting vaccinated people. This increase raises concerns because it may indicate a spike in cases this summer.

Howard Brown Health, a local LGBTQ-focused clinic, reported eight new Monkeypox cases since April 17. This number is concerning compared to only one case in the previous three months. Plus, the weekly Monkeypox case rate is the highest since early November.

Dr. Demetre Daskalakis, a White House Monkeypox response coordinator, emphasized the importance of vaccination and prevention efforts. Though the vaccine isn’t perfect, he said, it remains a crucial tool in fighting Monkeypox.

Recent cases have slightly increased in other countries as well, including France and several countries in East Asia. In fact, half of the recent French cases involved vaccinated people too. Despite this, global cases continue to decline since their peak in early August.

Experts worry that cases may grow during summer events, such as festivals and other gatherings. So, if you’re traveling to the US, and visiting Chicago specifically, take preventive measures.

Key Takeaways

As we now know, considering COVID is crucial when planning your trip, just like any other disease. However, this doesn’t imply you should stop taking preventive measures during your trip. Instead, you should remain vigilant about emerging diseases worldwide.

Pay close attention to public health concerns at your destination. By staying informed, you’ll ensure your safety and avoid any disruptions to your journey due to illness.

Need a COVID test before you go on your next adventure? Discover testing locations near you with our international directory.

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