Three children in Dallas County test positive for monkeypox – CBS DFW

DALLAS COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – Three children have tested positive for monkeypox in Dallas County. 

It comes on the heels of the state’s announcement on Tuesday that an adult in Harris County who had been diagnosed with monkeypox died.

The adult who died had a severely compromised immune system based on other health issues, so it’s unclear at this point if monkeypox even played a role. 

The increase in cases among kids here locally has health officials urging high-risk adults to be careful around them. 

Dallas County now has 32,000 doses of the monkeypox vaccine available to combat the outbreak that has now spread to children. 

Health officials won’t reveal the ages of the three cases among the juvenile patients other than they are under the age of 18. 

The health department said it shows that the disease can be contracted through non-sexual contact.  

“That’s why we ask adults to be very careful around children if you have any symptoms or monkeypox,” said Christian Grisales with Dallas County Health and Human Services. “What you need to do immediately is to isolate, get tested and if you get qualify for the vaccinated immediately.”

DCHHS said it has no plans to widen the criteria for the vaccine which remains available only to certain categories of men who engage in sex with other men. 

“Should you keep your kids home from school? No. Monkeypox is very rarely a fatal disease,” said Dr. James Pinckney.

Pinckney, founder and CEO of Diamond Health, said the few cases among children should not be considered a serious concern. 

But he said it does mean encouraging good hygiene and close monitoring for symptoms. 

“I think what we should do is continue to be cautious, monkeypox has spread to individuals that typically aren’t contracting disease,” Pinckney said. “When the outbreak first started, it was caused by sexual contact and now we’re seeing more and more cases where people have come in direct contact with monkeypox or someone infected with monkeypox and it is spreading in a different manner.”

Dallas County currently has 526 confirmed cases, only five of those women. 

That’s nearly 100 more cases than this time last week but health officials believe the numbers show that the spread is slowing.