Monkeypox outbreak hits New York and San Francisco

Outlets are reporting that the liberal states of New York and California, among others, have been experiencing a Monkeypox outbreak. 

For those unfamiliar with Monkeypox, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains:

Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as smallpox. Monkeypox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms, but milder; and monkeypox is rarely fatal. Monkeypox is not related to chickenpox.

Symptoms, according to the CDC, include such things as fever, headache, muscle aches, rash, and more. It commonly spreads by “direct contact with the infectious rash, scabs, or body fluids,” or by “respiratory secretions during prolonged, face-to-face contact, or during intimate physical contact, such as kissing, cuddling, or sex.”

The illness typically lasts about 4 weeks.

Monkeypox is in the U.S.

While endemic to some countries in Africa, Monkeypox has not really been a problem here in America over the years. In recent weeks, though, we have seen a dramatic rise in America of Monkeypox cases.

Reports indicate that the U.S. has now seen over 800 cases of the illness.

New York is currently seeing some of the worst Monkeypox numbers with 153 confirmed cases. California is not that far behind with 136 cases. Every other state is below 100 cases, and some have seen 1 or fewer cases.

One of the big questions is how Monkeypox has gotten into the U.S. and other countries where it is not typically found.

The CDC reports:

It’s not clear how the people were exposed to monkeypox, but early data suggest that gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men make up a high number of cases. However, anyone who has been in close contact with someone who has monkeypox is at risk.

What now?

The CDC is taking measures to address the outbreak.

There are preventative vaccines available, but there are problems with them. For example, supplies are limited and there is no data on the effectiveness of the vaccines against the current outbreak.

For now, it appears that one of the top strategies of the CDC is to just raise awareness about the illness, including how to prevent it.

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