Mpox (formerly called Monkeypox) is a rare, but potentially serious viral illness that can be transmitted from person to person through direct contact with body fluid or mpox lesions.
- 2022 Outbreak Information
- District of Columbia 2022 Outbreak Data
- About Mpox
- Eligibility Criteria
- Guidance Documents
2022 Outbreak Information
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the first U.S. mpox case on May 18, 2022. In May 2022, Massachusetts confirmed a mpox case in a patient with recent travel to Canada; Texas and Maryland each reported a case in 2021 in people with recent travel to Nigeria. Since early May 2022, the United Kingdom has identified nine cases of mpox; the first case had recently traveled to Nigeria. None of the other cases have reported recent travel.
On May 26, 2022, DC Health issued a Health Notice for District of Columbia Health Care Providers with clinical recommendations and reporting requirements for any suspected cases.
On June 4, 2022, the DC Public Health Lab confirmed the first positive Orthopoxvirus case in a District resident who reported recent travel to Europe.
On September 22, 2022, DC Health announced the updated eligibility criteria for mpox vaccinations in the District.
As of April 1, residents can visit the DC Health & Wellness Center and Whitman-Walker Health to get the mpox vaccine (by appointment only). To find additional mpox vaccine locations, access the mpox vaccine locator widget on the CDC mpox vaccination page. To use the widget, simply type your zip code into the field and the widget will share mpox vaccine sites near you.
District of Columbia 2022 Outbreak Data
The data is updated on Wednesdays. For additional data points on DC cases, click here.
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Mpox was first discovered in 1958 when two outbreaks of a pox-like disease occurred in colonies of monkeys kept for research. The first human case of mpox was recorded in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of Congo during a concentrated effort to eliminate smallpox. Since then, mpox has been reported in people in several other central and western African countries.
Mpox cases in people have occurred outside of Africa linked to international travel or imported animals, including cases in the US.
In humans, the symptoms of mpox can be similar to but milder than the symptoms of smallpox.
Symptoms can begin with:
- Muscle aches
- Swollen lymph nodes
Within 1–3 days (sometimes longer) after the appearance of fever, the patient develops a rash, often beginning on the face and then spreading to other parts of the body. The rash can progress from being flat and red, to being a bump, to being fluid-filled, to being pus-filled, and then to being a scab.
Symptoms usually appear between 7–14 days after exposure but can range between 5–21 days. The illness typically lasts between 2–4 weeks.
Mpox virus can spread when a person comes into contact with the virus from an infected animal, infected person, or materials contaminated with the virus. Mpox virus may spread from animals to people through the bite or scratch of an infected animal, by handling wild game, or through the use of products made from infected animals. The virus may also spread through direct contact with body fluids or sores on an infected person or with materials that have touched body fluids or sores, such as clothing or linens.
Mpox spreads between people primarily through direct contact with infectious sores, scabs, or body fluids. It also can be spread by respiratory secretions during prolonged, face-to-face contact. Mpox can spread during intimate contact between people, including during sex, as well as activities like kissing, cuddling, or touching parts of the body with mpox sores.
There are a number of measures that be taken to prevent infection with mpox virus:
- Avoid coming into contact with people recently diagnosed with the virus or those who may have been infected.
- Wear a face mask if you are in close contact with someone who has symptoms.
- Practice good hand hygiene, especially after coming into contact with infected — or suspected infected. For instance, wash your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Use personal protective equipment when caring for patients with confirmed or suspected mpox infection.
There are no treatments specifically for mpox virus infections. However, mpox and smallpox viruses are genetically similar, which means that antiviral drugs and vaccines developed to protect against smallpox may be used to prevent and treat mpox virus infections.
JYNNEOSTM (also known as Imvamune or Imvanex) is an attenuated live virus vaccine which has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the prevention of mpox.
If you have symptoms of mpox, you should talk to your healthcare provider, even if you don’t think you had contact with someone who has mpox.
Those eligible for the mpox vaccine include individuals who meet one of the following criteria:
- All people, of any sexual orientation or gender, who have had multiple sexual partners in the past 2 weeks, including those currently considered highest risk: gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men, transgender men, and transgender women; or
- Men who have sex with men who are non-monogamous (pre-exposure prophylaxis); or
- Sex workers (of any sexual orientation or gender); or
- Staff (of any sexual orientation or gender) at establishments where sexual activity occurs (e.g., bathhouses, saunas, sex clubs).
- People of any sexual orientation or gender who:
- Are living with HIV/AIDS or have been diagnosed with any sexually transmitted infection in the past three months.
- Mpox Guidance for Schools and Childcare Facilities - ENGLISH
- Mpox Guidance for Schools and Childcare Facilities - SPANISH
- Mpox Guidance for Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) - ENGLISH
- Mpox One-Sheet - English
- Mpox One-Sheet - Spanish
Vaccine Clinic Trials
The George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences is recruiting volunteers for a mpox vaccine clinical trial. Learn more at gwvru.smhs.gwu.edu, or contact (202) 994-1599.