Guides to non-stigmatizing messaging around Monkeypox Virus

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Various sources, 12/08/2022

Careful messaging around Monkeypox is particularly important in view of the fact that misinformation, or messages which lack nuance, can jeopardise public health, further stereotypes, and fuel stigma and discrimination.

This can lead to increased minority stress and compromised health for gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men; as well as deterring potentially infected people from engaging with health services. Further, it leads to people erroneously thinking they are not at risk of Monkeypox because they do not belong to groups which are singled out. Thus inappropriate or ill-conceived messaging drives onwards transmission.

We have compiled a selection of resources which address this issue for various audiences.

1. Factsheet for Reporters on Monkeypox (MPV) and the LGBTQ Community | GLAAD

2. Monkeypox: How to avoid stigmatizing language | Jonathan and Karin Fielding School of Public Health (ucla.edu)

3. UNAIDS warns that stigmatizing language on Monkeypox jeopardises public health | UNAIDS

4. Reducing Stigma in Monkeypox Communication and Community Engagement | CDC

5. Risk communication and community engagement (RCCE) for monkeypox outbreaks: Interim guidance, 24 June 2022 | who.int

6. Reaching the vulnerable without stigma. |  The Lancet Infectious Diseases

7. We need to talk about monkeypox without shame and blame. | The Conversation

8. Monkeypox disinformation is on the rise. Experts say community-led health messages are key.| ABC 

Note: This post has been filed under more than one category, including the 'STI' category to reach those subscribers, to whom it will be relevant. However it is important to note that Monkeypox is not an STI. STIs are spread primarily through sexual contact, while monkeypox can spread through any form of prolonged, close contact (including sexual encounters).
By J Pope

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