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UK Summer Event Organizers Urged to Issue Monkeypox Guidance

A festival in the UK

A festival in the UK

Mark Beech/Bloomberg

Hi, it’s Damian in London. Monkeypox cases are on the rise across Europe, threatening to put a damper on summer events. But more on that in just a moment… 

England’s Glastonbury music festival is back after a two-year break due to Covid. But now there’s a new health threat to contend with — monkeypox.

As tens of thousands of music lovers head to Pilton in Somerset to listen to Billie Eilish and Paul McCartney, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control and the World Health Organization have told summer events organizers across Europe to issue guidance to attendees amid rising monkeypox cases. That’s because the cousin of the smallpox virus, one largely confined to Africa, has spread across Europe and the US in recent weeks. And its initial spread in Europe is thought to have been driven in part by a number of large rave events.

The health bodies say planners of large events need to send out timely and effective prevention messages, encourage good hygiene practices and warn of the potential risks to public health on their websites and social media accounts. They also need to communicate after the events, identifying potentially infected people and encouraging them to seek medical advice if symptoms arise.