DRC reports dangerous Mpox virus strain

A new Mpox virus has been found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where health officials warn of a new strain which can cause lesions across the whole body.

The virus, first found in the South Kivu province, can be passed through sexual transmission as well as skin-to-skin contact, scientists say.

They estimate the fatality rate at around 5% in adults and 10% in children.

Global health experts say the new variant risks cross-border and international spread of the virus, with one calling it the “most dangerous strain yet”, the BBC reported.

A worldwide epidemic of mpox in 2022 was brought under control by vaccinating vulnerable groups.

Official figures from the World Health Organization (WHO) show there have been nearly 8,000 cases this year in DR Congo, including 384 deaths – almost half of these among children under 15.