On Wednesday, Chile's Health Ministry reported the first death from monkeypox in the country, of a person who was diagnosed with the disease on September 29.
The Head of the Department of Epidemiology of the Health Ministry Christian Garcia said on his official Twitter account, "There is a pattern that is common (in severe cases), people with underlying pathologies that cannot respond in the best way to other diseases, in this case monkeypox."
The first case of monkeypox in Chile was reported in mid-June and, at the end of the month, a health alert was issued to strengthen surveillance and control of the disease. Post-exposure vaccination began throughout the country on October 19.
Monkeypox has been declared a global health alert by the World Health Organization (WHO). As of November 15, over 79 000 thousand infections and 50 deaths have been reported.
Ministry of Health reports first Monkeypox death in the country
The ministry also said in its statement that 30 of the total deaths reported are from the Americas region, according to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO): Brazil (12), U.S. (11), Mexico (4), Ecuador (2) and Cuba (1).
The Health Ministry called for "the importance of consulting a health center in time when symptoms appear." The symptoms of the disease are lesions on the skin or mucous membranes, possibly accompanied by a temperature above 38.5 °C, swollen glands, headache, muscle aches and weakness.
According to the health authority, close and prolonged skin-to-skin contact is the main route of transmission. In this sense, it warned that "people with multiple sexual partners or with risky behaviors are more prone to get sick."