01 AUG,2022 | MEDC
Several cases of monkeypox have surfaced in India, and the government has asked vaccine makers to develop a vaccine for it. That is in the fitness of things, as the WHO has now declared monkeypox a global emergency. Research has shown that those inoculated against smallpox – a closely related, but more deadly ailment – have stronger immunity against monkeypox. This has strong public health policy implications for India. Covid has taught us the hard way what our public health system needs to do in such uncertain times – contact tracing, institutional quarantines and keeping a lookout for any mutations of the virus. If our public health systems perform as they should, there is no reason to fear. Monkeypox is not Covid-19, and its economic falloutis likely to be a fraction of that of the pandemic. This is also an excellent opportunity for our healthcare system to do R&D in many other allied directions.