Wake County Public Health announced on Thursday the county has two confirmed cases of monkeypox in women.
A county-issued release said they are the first confirmed cases of the virus in women in North Carolina.
“While this global outbreak appears to mostly affect men who have sex with other men, monkeypox is a public health concern for all of us,” said Wake County Preventative Health Director Rebecca Kaufman in the release. “Although there is a low level of risk from just being in the same area as someone who has monkeypox, it is always important to clean surfaces, wear a mask when needed and wash hands frequently.”
Monkeypox is transmitted person-to-person through direct skin-to-skin contact, having contact with an infectious rash, through body fluids or through respiratory secretions. Such contact often occurs during prolonged, face-to-face contact or during intimate physical contact, such as kissing, cuddling or sex.
On Thursday, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reported 282 cases of monkeypox in the state, which is an increase compared to 198 cases reported on Aug. 18. Here is a breakdown of the state’s cases:
- 0-17: Two
- 18-29: 106
- 30-49: 153
- 50 years and older: 21
- American Indian/Alaskan Native: Three
- Asian: One
- Black or African American: 190
- Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: Zero
- White: 68
- Multiracial: Seven
- Other: 10
- Unknown: Three
- Hispanic: 25
- Non-Hispanic: 248
- Unknown: Nine
As of Aug. 25, there are 31 documented cases of the virus confirmed in Wake County.
Monkeypox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms, but milder, and monkeypox is rarely fatal. The symptoms can include a fever and sores that can spread all over the body.
As of Thursday, Wake County Public Health administered more than 1,300 doses of the vaccine.
Also, North Carolina has two confirmed cases of monkeypox among children as of Thursday.
On Tuesday, the Mecklenburg County Health Department reported North Carolina’s first known pediatric case of monkeypox.