Seven cases of monkeypox have been detected in the UK in a surprise outbreak that has caught health officials off-guard.
For the first time ever, the rare tropical disease is spreading in the community and the pattern is ‘highly suggestive of spread in sexual networks’, health chiefs say.
Until now, cases have been confined to travellers and their close relatives returning from Western Africa, where the virus is endemic.
Monkeypox can kill up to one in 10 people it infects — but the strain spreading in the UK is milder and has a fatality rate of about one in 100.
That is roughly the same as the first strain of Covid that came out of Wuhan, however vaccines and natural immunity have since made the coronavirus much weaker.
There are no specific treatments or vaccines available for monkeypox infection, but its similarity to smallpox means jabs against that virus are also effective.
But no vaccine is not approved in the UK.
Here is everything we know about the UK monkeypox outbreak so…