2022 U.S. Monkeypox Outbreak
We are currently monitoring this evolving outbreak and are working with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to ensure we stay up-to-date on any developments as they occur. For more information about symptoms of monkeypox and what people should know please view the information below and visit the CDC Monkeypox website.
Anyone can get monkeypox, but many of the cases identified in the current outbreak have been in men who have sex with men, thanks in part to the vigilance of those who sought testing when concerns arose leading to the recognition that monkeypox was spreading in the U.S. The disease is accompanied by a rash, which may look like pimples or blisters, often with an earlier flu-like illness. The rash starts flat then becomes bumpy and fluid-filled before scabbing over and resolving. This happens over a period of 2-4 weeks. Rashes may be all over the body, including the palms, feet, and head, or located only on specific body parts such as the genitals or around the buttocks.
How many cases are in Brunswick County?
Monkeypox is transmitted person to person through direct skin-to-skin contact, having contact with an infectious rash, through body fluids or through respiratory secretions. Such contact often occurs during prolonged, face-to-face contact or during intimate physical contact, such as kissing, cuddling or sex.
Visit the NC DHHS website for What You Need To Know about Monkeypox and Quick Facts
Take the following steps to prevent getting monkeypox:
- Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like monkeypox.
- Do not touch the rash or scabs of a person with monkeypox.
- Do not kiss, hug, cuddle or have sex with someone with monkeypox.
- Avoid contact with objects and materials that a person with monkeypox has used.
- Do not share eating utensils or cups with a person with monkeypox.
- Do not handle or touch the bedding, towels, or clothing of a person with monkeypox.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, especially before eating or touching your face and after you use the bathroom.
Testing is widely available and encouraged if you had close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with Monkeypox, or have symptoms of monkey pox including unexplained bumps, sores, blisters, or pimples that look like monkeypox. There is no shortage of testing supplies, and people with symptoms of Monkeypox should contact their health care provider to get tested.
Vaccines & Eligibility
Vaccines are available in limited supply, at no cost, for individuals with known or suspected exposure to monkeypox.
• People who have been in close physical contact with someone diagnosed with monkeypox in the last 14 days (PEP)
• Men who have sex with men, or transgender individuals, who report any of the following in the last 90 days:
1. Having multiple or anonymous sex partners
2. Being diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection
3. Receiving HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP)
• Available for certain healthcare workers and public health response team members designated by public health authorities
Individuals who meet these criteria can call their local health department to make an appointment to receive the vaccine, or they can call one of the seven local health departments that have already received vaccines as part of the phase 2b allocation of Jynneos vaccine:
• Cumberland (910) 433-3600
• Buncombe (828) 250-5300
• Durham (919) 560-9217
• Forsyth (336) 703-3100
• Guilford (336) 641-3245
• Mecklenburg (980) 314-9400
• New Hanover (910) 798-6800
• Pitt (252) 902-2300
• Wake (919) 250-4462