Monkeypox Outbreak In France: The Next Travel Crisis?

France has abolished all Covid-19 travel restrictions, allowing international travellers from the 1st of August to no longer need to provide proof of vaccination or recovery from the virus when entering the country.

However, now the threat of growing cases of monkeypox begs the question as to whether travellers are free from the tedious safety and health precautions.

Monkeypox, new restrictions, covid-19, France, global crisis
Could face masks become a permanent feature in international air travel? © BBC

The rise of monkeypox

The next wave of monkeypox has made its way to Europe, with France having 2,054 cases, the fifth-highest number of confirmed cases worldwide, last updated on the 2nd of August by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  The impact of Covid-19 exhausted health resources for multiple countries, with many health care workers still recovering from the last 18 months of physical and mental fatigue from the virus.  

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), monkeypox “is an illness caused by the monkeypox virus. It is a viral zoonotic infection, meaning that it can spread from animals to humans. It can also spread from person to person.”

Amélie Verdier, the head of Paris’ regional health agency, has expressed her concern for the pressures faced by workers in the health industry.

“Health professionals have been very hard hit by the Covid crisis.”

Vaccinations for protection against monkeypox are being widely circulated. According to France24, Dr Kevin Huy is one of many who have responded to a call for volunteers to administer vaccines against monkeypox, whilst still continuing to administer vaccinations for Covid-19.

The impact on the aviation industry

The looming threat of monkeypox is raising concern as to what impact this could bring to the aviation industry. Should governments and their airlines be putting together a rapid action plan to stop the spread of monkeypox now that the Covid-19 restrictions are being loosened and gradually lifted internationally?

Many people are unaware of the virus’s ability to infect anyone who comes into contact with objects, materials, or surfaces that have been contaminated by monkeypox due to the virus’s widespread disinformation.

With international travelling becoming easier in France, China and various places in the world, individuals are less inclined to put their life and holiday plans on pause.

Monkeypox and the future of travel

Whilst there are no current restrictions for monkeypox as of yet, the back-to-back pandemics have caused people to become anxious about the prospect of staying inside forever. Two deaths have also been reported in Spain from monkeypox.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) announced they “will continue to monitor this event” and recommend that “suspected cases should be isolated and tested and notified promptly.”

Will the increase in major health crises continue to put pressure on the aviation industry?  Let us know in the comments below!

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Danielle Osifo
Danielle Osifo
Danielle Osifo is a first year media student at the University of New South Wales. She is a freelance journalist who enjoys creative writing and reading in her spare time.


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