Prof. Nicola Low is the vice-chair of the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR) Emergency Committee regarding the multi-country monkeypox outbreak

Prof. Nicola Low is the vice-chair

22.07.2022 – The Emergency Committee holds its second meeting on Thursday 21st July 2022. The committee members (chaired by Dr. Jean-Marie Okwo-Bele) will provide their views to the Director General of the World Health Organization, who will determine whether the multi-country monkeypox outbreak constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). Following the first meeting of the Emergency Committee on 23 June 2022, the Director General determined that the event did not constitute a PHEIC.

Monkeypox is caused by a virus, which is transmitted to humans through close contact with an infected animal or with an infected person. Since May 2022, cases of monkeypox have been detected in countries where monkeypox virus is not endemic. Most cases in this multi-country outbreak have been amongst gay and bisexual and other men who have sex with men, in the context of sexual activities.

At the University of Bern, two members of the Multidisciplinary Center for Infectious Diseases have been appointed to the Emergency Committee – Prof. Nicola Low and Dr. Kathrin Summermatter (

For more information on monkeypox, see the World Health Organization website and the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health website.