Four additional cases of monkeypox have been detected in the UK, bringing the nationwide total to seven, health officials have announced.
Urgent investigations are underway to establish links between the latest four cases, who are gay or bisexual and appear to have been infected in London, UKHSA said.
None of the new cases have travelled to a country where monkeypox, a virus which kills up to 10 per cent of people it infects, is endemic, the agency added.
Seven cases have now been identified between 6 and 15 May, the first of whom had recently returned from Nigeria, which is where they are believed to have contracted the infection.
“This is rare and unusual,” said Dr Susan Hopkins, chief medical adviser at UKHSA. “The evidence suggests that there may be transmission of the monkeypox virus in the community, spread by close contact.
“We are particularly urging men who are gay and bisexual to be aware of any unusual rashes or lesions and to contact a sexual health service without delay. We are contacting any potential close contacts of the cases to provide health information and advice.”
More to follow