Surveillance, case investigation and contact tracing for monkeypox: interim guidance, 25 August 2022 – Global

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This is an updated version of previous guidelines published on June 24, 2022. They apply to all countries reporting cases of monkeypox in the current outbreak and with historically documented transmission of monkeypox.

On July 23, the Director General of the WHO declared the outbreak of monkeypox in several countries a public health emergency of international concern (USPPI). This interim guidance has been updated with the latest information on symptomatology and epidemiological parameters, and to align with the interim recommendations issued by the Director General.

The suspected case definition has been updated to include known contacts with prodromal signs or symptoms, and the suspected and probable case definitions have been updated to capture additional clinical features such as mucosal lesions. New variables have been added to the minimum dataset of probable and confirmed cases to be shared with WHO.

This version of the document contains the first definition of monkeypox-related death for surveillance purposes.

The overall goal of surveillance, case investigation and contact tracing in this setting remains to stop human-to-human transmission to control the outbreak.

Clinicians should immediately report suspected cases to local and state public health authorities. Probable and confirmed cases of monkeypox should be reported as soon as possible, including a minimum data set of epidemiologically relevant information, to WHO through IHR National Focal Points (NFPs).

If monkeypox is suspected, the case investigation should consist of clinical examination of the patient using appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), questioning the patient about possible sources of infection, and collecting and sending safely samples for laboratory examination for monkeypox virus.

As soon as a suspected case is identified, contact identification and upstream contact tracing should be initiated. Contacts of probable and confirmed cases should be monitored, or should self-monitor, daily for any signs or symptoms for a period of 21 days from the last contact. Quarantine or exclusion from work is not necessary as long as no symptoms develop.

More information on monkeypox

Monkeypox Minimum Data Set (CRF) Case Report Form