Yahoo News/WCPO: Health leaders investigating monkeypox

UC expert says monkeypox does not spread as easily as COVID-19

Health leaders around the world are monitoring an outbreak of monkeypox. The World Health Organization said it does not believe the monkeypox outbreak outside of Africa requires mass vaccinations as measures like good hygiene and safe sexual behaviour will help control its spread. 

Public health authorities in Europe and North America are investigating more than 100 suspected and confirmed cases of the viral infection in the worst outbreak of the virus outside of Africa, where it is endemic.

In a story produced by WCPO-TV and picked up by Yahoo News, Carl Fichtenbaum, MD, of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the UC College of Medicine said monkeypox isn't a great concern in its current state. 

Carl Fichtenbaum, MD, of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the UC College of Medicine

Carl Fichtenbaum, MD, of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the UC College of Medicine/Photo/Joe Fuqua II/UC Creative + Brand

"Every year, there may be 100-200 cases, mostly in West Africa, we don't usually see it outside of Africa unless someone has been traveling and then return," says Fichtenbaum. 

He says while it's unusual to see cases in the U.S., monkeypox does not spread as easily as COVID-19. 

"It's kind of like the flu, so coughing, sneezing but close contact. You have to be really...it's not like you're in the same room with somebody with COVID and you can get it," he says. "This has to be a little closer contact." 

Fichtenbaum says unlike when COVID-19 first hit early in 2020, there is already a known treatment for monkeypox. 

"Turns out the smallpox vaccination that many older Americans got protects you from monkeypox and there are medications that we can use," he says. "I don't think people need to quickly rush and say 'oh my gosh, I need to be in my house again and we're never going to be able to go out.' It's not that time yet."

See the entire story here

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