Monkeypox has been found in 12 states and Washington, DC, just weeks after it was first detected in the US, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The agency has stressed that the virus, which spreads through prolonged skin to skin contact, is not a high risk to the public.
However, the CDC did raise its warning level for monkeypox to a Level 2 concern, meaning Americans should be cautious when they travel but do not have to cancel their plans.
A person infected with monkeypox can form painful rashes and lesions. The virus lasts from two to four weeks, and a person is no longer contagious once the lesions heal.
Most of the cases in the US have been found in men who have sex with other men. One case has been discovered in a woman who had engaged in heterosexual sex.
The US has not reported any deaths from the monkeypox cases, and officials are working to contain cases by identifying who was exposed to the virus and getting them a vaccine.
There are currently more than 30 cases in the nation.
“The strain of the monkeypox virus affecting patients in this outbreak is the West African clade, and that is less severe than other known clades [such as] the Congo Basin clade, meaning that in historical outbreaks in Africa it has led to fewer deaths,” Jennifer McQuiston, deputy director for the CDC’s Division of High Consequence Pathogens and Pathology, said.
Here are the states known to have monkeypox cases:
California has at least six known monkeypox cases in the state. The first case was announced on May 27.
The patient was from Sacramento County and recently traveled to Europe. The individual was not hospitalized and isolated at home.
Los Angeles County recorded its first case on June 2, saying the person recently traveled and was in close contact with someone who likely had the virus.
The individual was symptomatic but did not need to be hospitalized.
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) announced the first monkeypox case in the state on May 26.
The first case was a young adult male who traveled to Canada, and a second case was reported about a man who was a close contact of the first individual, according to the state health department, Rocky Mountain PBS reported.
Since then, a third individual in Colorado was confirmed to have contracted monkeypox.
Florida has four recorded monkeypox cases in the state, with the first announced on May 22.
The first case was from an individual in Broward County who recently traveled outside the US
Since then, two more cases have popped up in the area. CBS Miami reported that one of the cases was from a person who traveled internationally, and another was in a person who contracted the virus in Florida.
The CDC also reported a fourth case in the Sunshine State.
The state announced its first monkeypox case on June 6 in a man from the Atlanta metropolitan area.
The man has a history of international travel and has been isolated in his home.
No further cases have been reported in Georgia so far.
Hawaii announced a probable monkeypox case on June 4 in a resident of the state.
The patient recently traveled to an area that is known to have cases, according to the state’s health department.
The person is in the hospital and in stable condition.
The first case of monkeypox in Illinois was announced on June 2 in a man who recently traveled to Europe.
The individual was a resident of Chicago who was isolated at home and in “good condition,” according to the state.
A second case was announced a day later in another Chicago resident who was a close contact of the first man.
The first case of monkeypox in the US was found in Massachusetts and announced on May 18.
The case was in an adult male who recently traveled to Canada. The state said the individual was in the hospital and in good condition when the infection was announced.
No more cases have since been reported in the state.
New York has confirmed seven people have contracted monkeypox after the first case was confirmed on May 26.
The state did not say where the individuals recently traveled, but warned that those who have traveled to Portugal, Spain, the UK, Canada or Central or Western African countries are more at risk to have the virus.
The state also said men who have sex with men and anyone that has close physical contact with others is at an elevated risk.
The Philadelphia Department of Public Health announced the state’s first monkeypox case on June 2.
The case was in a Philadelphia resident, but no further information was given about the patient.
“The threat to Philadelphians from monkeypox is extremely low,” said Health Department Acute Communicable Disease Program Manager Dana Perella. “Monkeypox is much less contagious than COVID-19 and is containable particularly when prompt care is sought for symptoms.”
In Utah, the Salt Lake County Health Department issued an announcement on May 23 about two probable monkeypox cases.
The cases were in two adult males that lived in the same household. The two traveled internationally earlier in May.
The individuals had mild cases, according to the department, and were expected to fully recover.
Virginia announced its first case of monkeypox on May 26 in a female resident.
The woman recently traveled to an African country where the monkeypox virus is present, according to the state.
She was isolated at home and did not require hospitalization.
Washington reported one case on May 27 and has since not seen any more recorded cases of monkeypox.
The state said the individual was isolated at home and did not need hospitalization, but did not disclose recent travel history.
None of the people exposed to the patient were considered possible positive cases.
The District of Columbia announced its first monkeypox case on Monday in an individual who recently traveled to Europe.
Authorities said close contacts of the individuals are being monitored, and no further cases have been reported.
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