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An emergency committee of the World Health Organization will meet on Thursday to decide whether the monkeypox outbreak is a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC), after a major test for the agency that was widely criticized How it handled the initial stages of COVID-19. Epidemic.

Key Facts

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A PHEIC is the WHO’s highest alert level under international law and is declared by the Director-General on the advice of an expert committee.

It aims to raise public awareness and sound the alarm for governments to take steps to contain the outbreak, as well as provide guidance on what measures they should take to do so.

In deciding whether a monkeypox outbreak qualifies for a PHEIC designation, the group will assess it against three CriteriaIf it is severe, sudden, unusual or unexpected, if it has the potential for international spread and if it requires a coordinated global response.

experts tell Forbes They believe that an outbreak of monkeypox meets all three criteria—some echoed by another experts Online—though they note that it is not a pre-determined conclusion that WHO chief Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus will announce the PHEIC.

There is an element of subjectivity to the decision, explained Claire Wenham, an associate professor of global health policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science. ForbesTaking into account past decisions where other factors have played a role.

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