2 more children in the US test positive for monkeypox

At least four children in the United States have now tested positive for monkeypox, officials have confirmed.

Amid a growing emergence of cases across the country, Indiana state officials confirmed late last week that two children had tested positive for monkeypox. At this time, no additional information has been made available due to patient confidentiality concerns, the Indiana Department of Health wrote in a statement.

“Like many other states, Indiana has seen an increase in monkeypox cases over the past month,” state health commissioner Dr. Kris Box said in a statement.

Federal officials had previously confirmed last month that two more children in the United States had tested positive for monkeypox.

One case was confirmed in an infant, who resides in California, and the other was reported in an infant, a non-US resident, who was tested while traveling through Washington, D.C. Both cases are unrelated, located in different jurisdictions, and were likely the result of family transmission.

Although no information is available on the current status of the virus-positive children in Indiana, the other two children, who were diagnosed with monkeypox, were reportedly healthy.

However, health officials are concerned about the impact monkeypox could have on young children.

Over the weekend, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned in a health alert that there is preliminary evidence to suggest that children under the age of 8 could develop more serious illness if infected with monkeypox. .

PHOTO: Epidemiologist Ryan Chatelain conducts monkeypox disease training for Salt Lake County Health Department health investigators, July 29, 2022, in Salt Lake City.

Epidemiologist Ryan Chatelain conducts monkeypox disease training for Salt Lake County Health Department health investigators, July 29, 2022, in Salt Lake City.

Rick Bowmer/AP

Currently, the majority of confirmed monkey cases nationally and globally in the current outbreak have been detected in gay, bisexual or other men who have sex with men. However, health officials have repeatedly stressed that the virus does not discriminate and that anyone exposed to monkeypox can contract the virus.

People are most often infected through close person-to-person contact, including intimate contact, although it is possible that the disease is also spread through respiratory secretions or by “touching objects, fabrics (clothing, bedding or towels) and surfaces that have been used by someone with monkeypox,” according to the CDC.

The news of additional cases of pediatric monkeypox comes amid growing pressure from authorities across the country for the United States to declare a public health emergency for the outbreak.

Illinois on Monday became the second state in the nation to declare monkeypox a public health emergency and therefore designate Illinois as a “disaster area” for the virus, Gov. JB Pritzker announced in A press release.

“[Monkeypox virus] is a rare but potentially serious disease that requires the full mobilization of all available public health resources to prevent further spread,” Pritzker wrote in a statement. “That’s why I’m declaring a state of emergency to ensure smooth coordination between state agencies and all levels of government, increasing our ability to prevent and quickly treat disease.”

The governor’s statement will allow the Illinois Department of Public Health to expand access to resources, such as vaccines and testing, in the state’s efforts to fight the virus.

“We have seen this virus have a disproportionate impact on the LGBTQ+ community during its initial spread. Here in Illinois, we will ensure our LGBTQ+ community has the resources they need to stay safe while ensuring that members are not stigmatized when accessing essential healthcare,” Pritzker added.

Last week, New York became the first state to declare monkeypox a “catastrophic emergency”, with officials calling New York the “epicenter of the outbreak”.

Across the country, in San Francisco, authorities have also implemented a local emergency declaration for monkeypox.

Globally, more than 22,000 cases reported worldwide, including nearly 5,200 cases reported in the United States, according to the CDC.

Cases of monkeypox have now been reported in nearly every state in the country, with Montana, Vermont and Wyoming now the only states yet to have confirmed cases.

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