DOH: No cases of monkeypox in PH; govt 'intensifying' border screening

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 20)— There are no detected cases of monkeypox in the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) said Friday as it vowed to closely monitor global developments on the rare disease.

"To date, monkeypox has not been detected within the Philippines or at its borders," the DOH said in an advisory.

The agency stressed it is "intensifying" border screening following reports that the disease has made its way to various countries including the United States, Canada, Spain, and Italy.

Monkeypox is a viral disease coming from animals, which can be transmitted to humans through close contact with an infected, the DOH said, citing information from the World Health Organization.

Contaminated materials can also be a potential source of transmission, according to the department.

Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle weakness, and rashes.

"While monkeypox may look like smallpox, it is less contagious and causes less severe illness," the DOH noted.

READ: What is monkeypox and its signs and symptoms? 

The department urged the public to continue practicing minimum health protocols— mask-wearing and physical distancing, among others— to prevent transmission.