The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has confirmed that close contacts of monkeypox no longer need to isolate if they do not have symptoms.

It stated that the change is taking place because a relatively small number of close contacts have gone on to develop monkeypox.

There is also a lack of evidence of transmission outside of close and/or intimate contact.

This brings the UK’s guidance in line with advice from the World Health Organisation and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It comes as 100,000 additional vaccine doses were secured by the UKHSA.

“Monkeypox is a rare and usually mild disease that does not spread easily between people, but we are taking action to help further manage the outbreak in the UK by procuring over 100,000 additional doses of vaccine,” said Steve Barclay, the Health Secretary.

“The NHS is already contacting those eligible for the vaccine, and I would urge people to take up the offer as soon as they are contacted. In the meantime, please contact a sexual health clinic if you notice any unusual rashes or lesions.

“I am hugely grateful to the fantastic sexual health staff and 111 call handlers for working hard to keep the current outbreak under control.”

Vaccines are currently being offered to some men who have sex with men who may be at hire risk of getting the virus, with the criteria used to assess who gets it being similar to that of PrEP.

As of 18 July, there are 2,137 confirmed cases in the UK – 2,050 of which are in England.

Updated guidance on monkeypox can be read in full here.