Cross River Government on Sunday said it had strengthened its surveillance team in border communities and all the local governments of the state as Monkey pox outbreak hits some states in South-South.

The Commissioner for Health, Dr Inyang Asibong, disclosed this in an interview in Calabar.

“Cross River is not far from other states in the South-South that have witnessed the outbreak, we are working round the clock to prevent the disease in the state.

“As soon as we heard about the outbreak, we took extra precautions. Already, we have a team set up for infection, disease preparedness and control.

“We are always on alert and in constant surveillance of any disease outbreak. We have held several meetings with the state epidemiologists because we believe that prevention is better than cure.

“Currently, we are carrying out sensitisation and advocacy campaigns in communities through community leaders, town announcers and the media,’’ she said.

Asibong said that the state had also taken proactive measures by dispatching its epidemiological team to strategic areas in the state.

She described Monkey pox as a rare viral disease transmitted to humans from animals, adding that the first case was noticed in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1970.

The commissioner also said that security personnel on border areas across the state had been sensitised about the disease.