It has now been about two weeks since the rainbow flags have been packed away, and LGQBT+++ participants and their supporters have returned from pride parade celebrations from noted monkeypox epicenters, New York City and Los Angeles.
The incubation period for monkeypox is around 14 days. And, as I predicted, cases are popping up around the country.
Iowa has recorded its first case.
Iowa’s first probable case of monkeypox was reported July 2 in an adult from the north central part of the state, the Iowa Department of Public Health had announced. The patient was likely infected during international travel, and health officials said the risk to the general public is low.
Polk County Health Department Director Helen Eddy echoed similar statements in Monday’s announcement, but added, “it is important for the community to be aware of this virus including transmission, prevention and when it’s appropriate to seek medical care.”
The first New Mexico case is being reported and associated with travel.
Officials said the patient returned from out-of-state travel and was likely exposed through contact.
Initial testing was completed late Friday by the DOH Scientific Laboratory Division and confirmatory testing is being completed at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The individual is doing well and isolated at home. It’s unknown what part of the state he is from.
The first case has been reported in Milwaukee, WI. This news follows closely with the state’s first case being recorded.
The first case of monkeypox in a Milwaukee resident was identified Saturday and local health officials expect more cases in the coming weeks.
The person with the newly identified case is isolating and close contacts have been notified, according to a statement from the Milwaukee Health Department.
The discovery of the case — the second in the state — was not a surprise, given the increasing number of cases across the nation, Milwaukee Health Commissioner Kirsten Johnson said in the statement.
Kansas has identified its first case of the disease. The resident had traveled out of state.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment said Saturday that the patient is an adult resident in Johnson County who recently traveled out of state. The department said the risk of infection remains low for the general public.
“The risk of monkeypox spreading in Kansas remains low,” Janet Stanek, Secretary of KDHE, said in a press release. “If you are experiencing symptoms of monkeypox illness, it’s important to stay home and contact your health care provider as soon as possible to avoid spreading the disease to others.”
South Carolina is reporting its first two monkeypox vases.
Two cases of the disease have been detected in patients in the Midlands and in the Lowcountry, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control said on Friday.
“We understand residents have concerns about how this virus might impact our state,” said Dr. Linda Bell, the state epidemiologist. “We expected infections to eventually occur in South Carolina as part of the larger international outbreak, which is why DHEC has been planning a response for weeks. That said, monkeypox doesn’t spread easily and we believe the risk to the general population remains low at this time.”
There is some good news. The current strain of monkeypox making the rounds is less virulent than initially thought.
But after roughly 9,000 cases around the world over the past few months, only three deaths have been recorded.
It means monkeypox has a fatality rate of around 0.03 per cent, around 30 times less than first mooted when the outbreak kicked off.
Furthermore, all three of the deaths have occurred in African nations where the virus is considered endemic.
No fatalities have been reported elsewhere, despite the current outbreak having now reached 70 countries. The virus, which causes a similar rash to its cousin smallpox, is spreading predominately in gay and bisexual men.
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