Publication in BMJ Global Health highlights a lack of clinical management guidelines for monkeypox globally

A systematic review co-authored by researchers from the GloPID-R Scientific Secretariat concludes that a lack of clinical guidance on monkeypox may impact patient care and outcomes. Led by ISARIC (International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infection Consortium), the study was published in the open access journal BMJ Global Health on 17 August 2022.

To assess availability of evidence-based care guidelines globally, the scientists looked at existing clinical guidelines for treating patients with monkeypox infection. They found 14 relevant guidelines with significant variability in scope, inclusivity of different risk groups and recommendations, which may be explained in part by the still-evolving understanding of the monkeypox virus. A lack of quality guidelines and standardized care may impact clinicians and patients, and also poses a challenge for research studies to identify new treatments. The study’s conclusions highlight “a need for a rigorous framework for producing guidelines ahead of epidemics and a recognised platform for rapidly reviewing and updating guidance during outbreaks, as new evidence emerges.” In light of the urgent need for research into MPX treatment and prophylaxis for various at-risk populations including children, pregnant women and immunocompromised patients, the authors recommend globally-accessible clinical guidelines using a “living guideline” framework for new evidence to be incorporated during epidemics. They note that the current monkeypox outbreak provides an opportunity to speed up high-quality research through coordinated studies. This review was funded by GloPID-R members including the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office; Wellcome Trust; and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In addition to lead author Louise Sigfrid (ISARIC Pandemic Sciences Institute, University of Oxford, and GloPID-R), Alice Norton and Susan Khader of the GloPID-R Scientific Secretariat contributed as co-authors.

Webb E, Rigby I, Michelen M, et al.
Availability, scope and quality of monkeypox clinical management guidelines globally: a systematic review
BMJ Global Health 2022;7:e009838

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The GloPID-R Secretariat is a project which receives funding from the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 101094188.