(CTN News) – According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 700 cases of monkeypox have been reported globally, including 21 in the United States, with investigations now indicating it is spreading within the country.
According to a new CDC report, 16 of the first 17 cases were among men who have had sex with men, and 14 were associated with travel.
In all cases, the patients have recovered or are recovering from their illnesses, and no deaths have occurred.
There have also been cases in the United States that have been linked to known cases, CDC official Jennifer McQuiston told reporters on a call.
We have at least one case in the United States without a travel link.
Rare disease monkeypox causes a rash that spreads, fever, chills, and aches among other symptoms, though it is less severe than smallpox.
Since May, cases have been reported in Europe, and the number of countries affected has increased since.
Canada released new figures Friday, including 77 confirmed cases – almost all of them in Quebec province, where vaccines have been delivered.
Until all sores scabs and new skin form, a person is contagious.
‘More than enough vaccine’
Raj Panjabi, the White House’s senior director for global health security and biodefense, added that 1,200 vaccines and 100 treatment courses were delivered to US states, where they were given to those close to the infected.
ACAM2000 and JYNNEOS, which were developed against smallpox, are currently authorized vaccines.
The United States retains smallpox vaccines in a strategic reserve in case it is used as a biological weapon.
JYNNEOS has fewer side effects than the other vaccine.
Dawn O’Connell, assistant secretary for preparedness and response at HHS, told reporters there are more than enough vaccines available.
CDC officials said in late May they had 100 million ACAM200 and 1,000 JYNNEOS doses available, but O’Connell said Friday they have now changed, though she couldn’t divulge precise numbers for strategic reasons.
CDC has also approved repurposing two antivirals used to treat smallpox, TPOXX and Cidofovir, to treat monkeypox.
Monkeypox can affect anyone, including those who do not identify as men but have sex with men, said McQuiston.
She adds that the CDC is undertaking special outreach to the LGBT community.
Anyone with a new characteristic rash, or a man who has sex with men, or who meets the criteria for high suspicion, should be considered a suspected case.