Today, Alameda County announced that a resident has tested positive for Orthopox and is suspected to be infected with the Monkeypox virus. The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) conducted testing for Orthopox and results from testing by the CDC would provide confirmation of Monkeypox infection. The resident who tested positive had close contact with someone who recently also tested positive for Orthopox. Federal privacy law prevents sharing additional information.
While the number of probable/confirmed cases is growing in California (8) and the United States (40), the risk of monkeypox to the general population is low. Monkeypox spreads through direct, close contact with an infected person. The virus enters the body through broken skin (even if not visible), the respiratory tract, or mucous membranes (eyes, nose, or mouth) after skin or sexual contact, from bodily fluids, or contact with contaminated clothing or linens.
Residents should consider the risk factors associated with Monkeypox. Patients infected with the Monkeypox virus may experience flu-like symptoms and a rash on their face, extremities, or genital area. While rare and, in most cases mild, some Monkeypox infections can lead to severe illness. Treatment and vaccines are available for people who are exposed.
Residents can take steps to protect themselves from infection:
• Masks are required in indoor public settings in Alameda County. Wearing a well-fitted mask can
also protect you from respiratory droplets that may carry the Monkeypox virus
• Keep hands clean with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rub
• Avoid sharing bedding, clothing, and food or drink with others
• Talk to close physical contacts about their general health like recent rashes or sores
• Stay aware if traveling to countries where there are outbreaks