County health departments in West Central Florida are monitoring and responding to the nationwide outbreak of monkeypox, according to a news release from the Florida Department of Health-Pasco.
As of July 22, there were cases of monkeypox in at least 43 states and Washington D.C., and no deaths had been reported outside of the endemic countries.
If a case is discovered within the West Central Florida region, the health department will conduct epidemiological investigations to notify possible exposures and offer potential post-exposure prophylaxis.
Health departments in West Central Florida will offer the monkeypox vaccine to high-risk groups, as doses become available from the federal government, the release says.
Current information on monkeypox is available at FloridaHealth.gov.
Case data for monkeypox, as well as other reportable diseases, can be found on FLHealthCharts.gov.
Health care providers who suspect a possible case of monkeypox, should immediately contact their local health department or the 24/7 disease reporting hotline at 850-245-4401.
Local county health departments can help providers obtain monkeypox virus-specific real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing.
Human-to-human transmission generally requires prolonged, face-to-face contact, direct contact with lesion materials, or indirect contact with lesion materials through contaminated items, such as contaminated clothing.
Health care providers should remain vigilant of information related to monkeypox:
- Monkeypox symptoms, especially among individuals with relevant travel history
- Transmission and incubation periods
- Specimen collection
- Infection control procedures in the home and hospital settings
- Clinical recognition, and the characteristic rash associated with monkeypox
- Prophylaxis and possible treatments for monkeypox
- Monitoring of those exposed to monkeypox
The public also should remain vigilant of the current meningococcal outbreak
Demographic impacts are similar among meningococcal and monkeypox cases. The release says.
The meningococcal vaccines are available for free to high-risk populations at every county health department.
For more information or questions, contact your county health department.
Published August 03, 2022