Belgium has become the first country to introduce a compulsory 21-day monkeypox quarantine – as doctors warn of a ‘significant rise’ in UK cases over next ‘two to three weeks’
Those who contract the virus will now have to self-isolate for three weeks, Belgian health authorities have said, after three cases were recorded in the country.
The cases, the first of which was recorded on Friday, are all linked to a festival in the port city of Antwerp.
It comes as doctors have warned that the UK faces a ‘significant’ rise in infections and the government’s response is ‘critical’ in containing its spread.
Dr Claire Dewsnap, president of the British Association for Sexual Health and HIV, has also said the outbreak could have a ‘massive impact’ on access to sexual health services in Britain.
It comes as Sajid Javid yesterday revealed another 11 Britons had tested positive for the virus, taking the total to 20.
The cases include a British child currently in a critical condition at a London hospital, while a further 100 infections have been recorded in Europe.
Dr Dewsnap told Sky News: ‘Our response is really critical here.
‘There is going to be more diagnoses over the next week.
‘How many is hard to say. What worries me the most is there are infections across Europe, so this has already spread.
‘It’s already circulating in the general population.
‘Getting on top of all those people’s contacts is a massive job.
‘It could be really significant numbers over the next two or three weeks.’
She says she expects more cases to be identified around the UK, with a ‘significant rise over this next week’.