The World Health Organization advises to “reduce the number of sexual partners” among gay men… to stop the spread of “monkeypox”

Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) — According to the World Health Organization, the majority of monkeypox infections have been detected among men who have sex with men, and it is on the rise.

The Director-General of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, advised members of the gay men’s community, on Wednesday, to reduce their exposure to the virus by reducing the number of their sexual partners, and to reconsider sex with new partners.

Tedros said, during a press conference, that “this outbreak can be reduced if countries, communities and individuals are informed of the developments related to the disease, take the risks seriously, and take the necessary steps to stop transmission and protect vulnerable groups.” “The best way to do this is by reducing your risk of infection, by making safe choices for yourself and others,” he added.

“For men who have sex with men, this includes, for the time being, reducing the number of your sexual partners, reconsidering having sex with new partners, and exchanging contact details with any new partner to enable follow-up, if necessary.”

While Tedros made it clear that the focus in all countries should be on engaging and empowering MSM communities to reduce the risk of transmission, he cautioned states on the need to protect human rights.

“Stigma and discrimination can be just as dangerous as the virus,” he said.

Dr. Dimitri Daskalakis, who is responsible for the monkeypox response with the US Centers for Disease Control and Control (CDC), told CNN this month that monkeypox is not viewed as a sexually transmitted disease, but most people who have recently contracted it in the United States have reported it. about some level of sexual activity, which may also include oral sex.

The virus is spread primarily through physical contact at the skin level, but it can also be transmitted by touching other items such as bed sheets or towels that a person with monkeypox might have used, as well as through close contact such as kissing.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Control, researchers are investigating the possibility of the virus being spread by an asymptomatic person, or through semen, vaginal fluids, and stool.

The agency noted that wearing a condom may help, but it may not protect against the spread of monkeypox on its own. However, the agency stresses that condoms may protect against other sexually transmitted infections.

Tedros’ comments on limiting sexual partners are among the strongest yet.

Similarly, health officials in the United States have advised reducing sexual partners, but they use softer language.

This month, Dr. Rochelle Wallinsky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommended “avoiding skin contact, which also includes intimate contact, with people with a monkeypox-like rash. Other harm reduction measures include reducing sexual activity with multiple sexual partners or unknowns.”

The agency also advised people who want to reduce physical contact as much as possible during sex by not taking off clothing, or covering areas with rashes, and if they choose to have sex with someone who has or may have been exposed to monkeypox, they should talk about the virus early .

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