CDC confirms 5 monkeypox cases in Hawaii – Hawaii News Now

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – The CDC confirmed Hawaii’s monkeypox case count stands at five.

Three of the previously reported cases were classified as probable until the CDC confirmed they were in fact monkeypox infections Thursday.

Meanwhile, the state Health Department previously said it identified “connections” among all five people. A spokesperson said at least one case “was connected a social gathering,” thought details on the event were not provided

Despite the rise in cases, health officials said the risk to the general population remains low.

“The risk to most Hawaii residents remains low,” said deputy state Epidemiologist Dr. Nathan Tan, in a news release.

“Anyone who has close contact with someone with monkeypox is at risk of infection — regardless of who they are, what they do, or if they are sexually active.”

The Health Department said it is conducting contact tracing on all cases and coordinating vaccines.

The monkeypox cases come amid an outbreak nationwide and in Europe.

Monkeypox typically requires very close contact to pass from one individual to another.

It often begins with flu-like symptoms and swelling of the lymph nodes. Patients also experience a rash or sores on the face and body. Individuals generally become ill within 21 days of exposure.

The CDC has said that many of the cases are among gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men, suggesting some populations may need to take extra precautions. However, anyone who has been in close contact with someone with monkeypox is at higher risk of infection and should monitor symptoms closely.

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