Monkeypox vaccine available to high-risk groups in Cincinnati, Hamilton County

The Hamilton County Public Health and the Cincinnati Health Department will offer the monkeypox...
The Hamilton County Public Health and the Cincinnati Health Department will offer the monkeypox vaccine to high-risk groups in Cincinnati and Hamilton County.(Source: WALB)
Published: Aug. 8, 2022 at 4:39 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - The Hamilton County Public Health and the Cincinnati Health Department will offer the monkeypox vaccine to high-risk groups in Cincinnati and Hamilton County.

The health departments said there is a limited vaccine supply, so they prioritize high-risk groups.

High-risk individuals are those who have skin-to-skin contact or contact with contaminated material of a confirmed case of monkeypox, according to the City of Cincinnati website.

“Similar to the way COVID vaccines were administered at the outset of the pandemic, we will use the risk tiers published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to develop a risk profile for people desiring vaccine,” according to Dr. Grant Mussman, Interim Health Commissioner for Cincinnati. “We will then contact those eligible to coordinate vaccination.”

>> Register for the vaccine here <<

According to the CDC, there are 45 confirmed monkeypox cases in Ohio as of Monday.

Monkeypox is a disease caused by a virus (monkeypox virus) not commonly seen in the United States, the Hamilton County Public Health said.

Monkeypox can cause a rash that may look like pimples or blisters, sometimes with a flu-like illness. Monkeypox can be spread from the time symptoms start until the rash has healed, all scabs have fallen off, and a fresh layer of skin has formed. This can take several weeks.

The Hamilton County Public Health says monkeypox can spread to anyone through close, personal, often skin-to-skin contact including:

  • Direct contact with monkeypox rash, scabs, or body fluids from a person with monkeypox. We believe this is currently the most common way that monkeypox is spreading in the U.S.
  • Touching objects, fabrics (clothing, bedding, or towels), and surfaces that have been used by someone with monkeypox.
  • Contact with respiratory secretions.

This contact can happen during intimate contact including:

  • Oral, anal, and vaginal sex or touching the genitals (penis, testicles, labia, and vagina) or anus of a person with monkeypox.
  • Hugging, massage, and kissing.
  • Prolonged face-to-face contact.
  • Touching fabrics and objects during sex that were used by a person with monkeypox and that have not been disinfected, such as bedding, towels, fetish gear, and sex toys.

Monkeypox symptoms:

  • You may experience all or only a few of the symptoms of monkeypox.
  • Most people with monkeypox will get a rash.
  • Some people have developed a rash before (or without) flu-like symptoms.
  • Monkeypox symptoms usually start within three weeks of exposure to the virus.
  • The flu-like symptoms may include fever, headache, muscle aches and backache, sore throat, cough, swollen lymph nodes, chills, or exhaustion.
  • If someone has flu-like symptoms, they will usually develop a rash 1-4 days later.
  • The rash may be located on or near the genitals or anus but could also be on other areas like the hands, feet, chest, or face.
  • The rash will go through several stages, including scabs, before healing.
  • The rash can look like pimples or blisters and may be painful or itchy.
  • The rash may also be inside the body, including the mouth, vagina, or anus.

If a person feels he/she may have contracted monkeypox, immediately take the following steps:

  • Self-isolate.
  • Avoid sex or being intimate with anyone until you have been checked out by a healthcare provider.
  • Avoid gatherings, especially if they involve close, personal, skin-to-skin contact.
  • Think about the people you have had close, personal, or sexual contact during the last 21 days, including people you met through dating apps. To help stop the spread, you might be asked to share this information if you have received a monkeypox diagnosis.

Seeking Care:

  • Call your primary care doctor or urgent care before arriving in person. Let them know if you have symptoms or have a confirmed exposure. This will allow staff time to prepare for a safe visit for you, them and other patients.

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