Six people in the United States are being monitored for possible monkeypox infections. The country announced its first two monkeypox cases last week, one in Massachusetts and another in New York City.
According to New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett, “Reports of suspected cases of monkeypox in the United States and elsewhere are concerning. While a possible case in New York State awaits confirmatory testing by our local and federal patterns, the Department has alerted healthcare providers to consider this unusual diagnosis if their patients present with symptoms”.
Meanwhile, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health confirmed its first case of monkeypox virus infection in a man who recently traveled to Canada. Officials at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are now working with MDPH to study the man who tested positive for the monkeypox virus last May 18, 2022.
Doctors are drawing attention to this trending outbreak because this infection was not through contact with an animal or from traveling to a place with high cases of monkeypox but rather a human-to-human contact.
A medical officer at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Agam Rao, said, “what we’re facing right now seems to be at least a subset of cases that don’t have any history of travel to one of those countries in Africa where the monkeypox virus naturally occurs, and don’t report any exposure to someone who has been diagnosed with monkeypox. So that we’re seeing right now is unusual.” Rao also stressed that the virus does not spread easily between people.
Based on Global.health, a medical organization that collects infectious disease data, 17 European countries have reported 166 confirmed cases today. The World Health Organization is now coordinating with the United Kingdom after Europe and Canada reported an unexpected spike in monkeypox cases.