According to the county health department, the infected person has a history of travel. The agency does not believe the individual contracted the virus in Greene County.
There are over 2,000 cases of monkeypox in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. New York State has roughly 700 confirmed cases. Most cases are in New York City. Other counties with confirmed cases include Westchester, Suffolk, Nassau, Monroe, Erie, Chemung, Rockland, St. Lawrence, Tomkins, Orange and Albany.
“As we learn more about this case of monkeypox and those around the state, now is not the time for alarm or panic,” Greene County Public Health said. “We have demonstrated our ability to deal with communicable infections in the past, and we will bring that same focus and professionalism to this outbreak. We stand ready to work with The New York State Department of Health to ensure we have the treatments, vaccines and response necessary to protect our residents as they become available.”
Monkeypox is caused by an orthopox virus, which is related to smallpox. New York State Department of Health Commissioner Mary Bassett said monkeypox is rarely fatal, but it is extremely painful due to lesions and scarring. It causes flu-like symptoms, swollen lymph nodes, or a rash that lasts two to four weeks. Infections spread through close physical contact between people or people and contaminated objects.
Treatment for monkeypox is primarily focused on relieving symptoms. Because smallpox is closely related to monkeypox, the smallpox vaccine can protect against both diseases. Evidence suggests that the smallpox vaccine can help prevent monkeypox infections and decrease the severity of the symptoms.
A vaccine rollout has begun by the state. The CDC currently recommends smallpox vaccination only in people who have been or are likely to be exposed to monkeypox.