Del Norte Public Health Lectures Monkey Disease | The outlet of wild rivers


Jessica Cejnar Andrews / Today @ 10:30 am / Health

Del Norte Public Health says monkeypox

Dear community members,
As many of you know, last week Humboldt County had its first confirmed case of monkeypox after several cases nationwide. While we would like to believe that we are somewhat protected from these infectious diseases given our remote and rural environment, the reality is that these diseases reach our communities, as we have seen with Covid-19.

Fortunately, there are some features of this latest virus threat that make it easier to manage.
Covid-19:

1. Monkey disease is transmitted by skin-to-skin contact or sharing items (clothes, towels) with an infected person. It can also be spread through close contact with infected people, but this mainly happens when living with or caring for someone with symptoms. Monkey disease has a good prognosis and is rarely fatal.

2. There is already a vaccine against monkeypox infection, Jynneos. It is made and stored before the outbreak of monkeypox and is also used to protect against a related virus called smallpox. The vaccine is only available to counties nationwide to respond to outbreaks and exposures and to vaccinate people at risk of contracting monkeypox.

We have not yet distributed the vaccine due to the small mandate that there is no active monkeypox, but we expect a certain amount to be available in the coming weeks.

3. The antiviral drug, Tpoxx (tecovirimat) has also been stockpiled by the federal government in cases of orthopoxviruses. This drug has activity against leprosy and is available in limited doses for patients with leprosy.

4. An accurate diagnosis of monkeypox already exists.
We are once again faced with an infectious disease widespread enough to garner national news attention, and it is worth noting that the scientific community has developed a response in the form of highly effective vaccines and antiviral drugs.

Communicable diseases are a fact of life and although they can occasionally be fatal in our healthy society, it is wise to protect ourselves against preventable diseases. The most important thing is that diseases have no political connection and the most effective way to avoid contracting them and spreading them to other members of the community is to get vaccinated if you are at risk and avoid behavior that puts you or others at risk.

If you believe you have been exposed to monkeypox, please seek medical evaluation from a physician or local emergency department. Post-exposure prophylaxis can be given with the vaccine at the time of confirmed exposure, and therefore it is important to seek medical help first.

For more information about monkeypox, including symptoms and people at risk, please see the links below.

• Questions and Answers from CDPH: cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Monkeypox-Questions-and-Answers.aspx

• Information from the CDC about monkeypox:
cdc.gov/poxvirus/monkeypox/response/2022/index.html

• Social gatherings and safe sex from the CDC: cdc.gov/poxvirus/monkeypox/specificsettings/social-gatherings.html
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