Scientific representatives from 20 countries, including Spain, as well as the European Commission, signed an international call to request open access to scientific data and publications on the monkeypox virus.
The World Health Organization (WHO) recently declared the monkeypox epidemic to be a public health emergency of international concern.
Therefore, the Ministry of Science and Innovation indicates on its website, that coordinating the international response to this virus is necessary to stop its spread and protect the populations at greatest risk.
“As we have seen with COVID-19 and with the recent Ebola and Zika outbreaks, the coordinated response of the international scientific community must be based on the rapid sharing of research data.”
The ministry adds that although the monkeypox virus has been extensively studied and there are measures to prevent and treat the disease it causes, there is still much to be learned in order to anticipate the epidemic and its development.
The signatories invite scientific organizations, authors, contributors and publishers to share their publications about this virus in open repositories, providing access to full text and metadata, with permissions for reuse and secondary analysis.
“Containing the spread of monkeypox is now necessary to prevent it from becoming an epidemic in more parts of the world and from emerging new viral reservoirs in countries where the disease is not endemic.”
According to the ministry’s website, “a quick response by the scientific and academic community and publishers of scientific publications will help in the global struggle against it.”
The call was signed by science and technology leaders and advisors representing Australia, Brazil, Canada, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Nigeria, the Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Commission’s Senior Scientific Advisers Group.
The Minister of Science and Innovation, Diana Morante, signed for the Spanish side.
Springer Nature, the academic publisher that publishes the scientific journal Nature, reported this week, for example, that after the recent announcement by the World Health Organization, it decided that content related to monkeypox in its journals should be freely available.