Slovenia’s health authorities have confirmed the Alpine country’s first case of monkeypox infection in a traveller who had returned from the Canary Islands in Spain.
The man was not admitted to a hospital because he was infected by a mild version of the West African strain of the viral disease, Mario Fafangel, the head of the national Centre for Infectious Diseases, told a news conference on Tuesday.
Fafangel said he believed the chain of transmission in Slovenia would be stopped quickly, adding that people who have been in contact with an infected person should be on alert for the next 21 days.
There was no need for the wider population to get vaccinated, he added, except for those handling the virus in laboratories.
Also on Tuesday, the Czech Republic registered its first case of monkeypox.
Pavel Dlouhy, head of the Czech Society for Infectious Diseases, told the AFP news agency on Tuesday that the disease was detected in a man at Prague’s Military University Hospital, but declined to give any details.
“It was only a question of time, we have been expecting this for days,” Dlouhy said.
During the past few days, several European and North American countries including the United Kingdom, France and the United States have reported cases of the rare virus which is endemic in parts of Africa.
Medical authorities have said, however, that the risk that the disease will spread widely is low.