Doctors must alert health authorities of cases of monkeypox by law

Making monkeypox a notifiable disease will also help businesses that may suffer financial losses due to the outbreak.

The same decision was made for Covid before the first lockdown.

Officials said at the time that it would “help businesses claim compensation through their insurance policies in the event of any cancellations they may have to make due to the spread of the virus.”

There are currently 34 reportable diseases, including rabies, whooping cough and measles.

So far, a large proportion of the cases have been identified in the gay, bisexual and men who have sex with men community.

Monkeypox is not normally a sexually transmitted infection, but it can be transmitted through direct contact during sex.

It can also be spread by touching clothes, bedding, or towels used by someone with the monkeypox rash.

According to the UKHSA, monkeypox does not generally spread easily between people and the overall risk to the UK population remains low.

Anyone with unusual rashes or sores on any part of their body, especially their genitals, should contact NHS 111 or call a sexual health service if they have concerns, he said .

The disease is usually mild but can lead to serious illness in some cases.

Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, back pain, swollen lymph nodes, chills and exhaustion.

A rash may develop, often starting on the face, which then spreads to other parts of the body, including the genitals.

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