Long Beach officials report city’s 1st suspected monkeypox case

Long Beach identified its first suspected case of monkeypox, health officials said Saturday.

An adult Long Beach resident who has no recent travel history or known contacts with others who have been infected has tested positive for orthopoxvirus and health officials are awaiting additional testing to confirm the person has monkeypox. Diseases associated with the virus include cowpox, monkeypox, and smallpox. The Long Beach Department of Health said it was conducting a “full contact investigation” and offering vaccines to people who may have been exposed.

“The risk of monkeypox is very low, but we are continuing our work and taking proactive measures to limit further spread,” said Dr. City Health Officer Anissa Davis in a statement.

Monkeypox is rarely fatal but can lead to potentially serious illness. Symptoms include fever, headache, swollen lymph nodes, and a rash that can lead to pimples or blisters.

Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia said in a statement that the city “takes monkeypox very seriously and is working diligently to vaccinate those at highest risk, understanding that the vaccine’s availability is extremely limited at this time.”

As availability of the Jynneos vaccine remains extremely limited in the US, Long Beach officials are offering it to people who have been exposed to someone with monkeypox; Individuals who attended an event or venue where there was a high risk of exposure to someone with monkeypox through skin-to-skin or sexual contact; and gay or bisexual men and transgender people who have had rectal gonorrhea or early syphilis within the past three months.

To date, there have been 250 confirmed cases of monkeypox in California – 85 of them in Los Angeles County – and 12,000 worldwide. It’s not considered widespread, but LA County has seen a spike in cases in recent weeks.

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-07-16/long-beach-suspected-monkeypox-case Long Beach officials report city’s 1st suspected monkeypox case

Alley Einstein

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