Monkeypox is a contagious disease caused by the monkeypox virus. There is currently an outbreak of monkeypox in the U.S. and other countries where the virus is not usually seen. The current monkeypox situation is evolving quickly and is subject to change.
As of August 18, eighteen people in Hawaii have tested positive for orthopoxvirus or monkeypox. All cases are likely monkeypox. Most of these people have not been hospitalized and have recovered on their own. The rash and sores from monkeypox can be painful and can last two to four weeks.
- Monkeypox virus can spread when a person comes into close, intimate contact with the virus from an infected person or materials contaminated with the virus.
- Common symptoms: Flu-like symptoms; swelling of lymph nodes; rash or sores, often on the hands, feet, chest, face, or genitals.
- Avoid skin-to-skin and prolonged close contact (touching sores, kissing, sex) with anyone who has an unusual rash or monkeypox symptoms.
As vaccine supplies are limited, the Hawaii Department of Health has developed a strategy for vaccine allocation in Hawaii to protect those at increased risk of infection or severe disease.
People who are currently eligible for a JYNNEOS vaccine include Hawaii residents ages 18 years and older AND fall into one of the following categories:
- Close contact in the last 14 days with a person with known or suspected monkeypox infection
- Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender individuals who have multiple or anonymous sex partners (e.g., such as through dating apps)
- People who are severely immunocompromised (e.g., advanced or poorly controlled HIV infection [CD4 ≤200 cells/mm3, persistent HIV viral load >200 copies/mL, or a recent HIV-related illness], active cancer treatment, high-dose steroids) or have certain skin conditions, such as eczema, AND who have a household member or sex partner at high risk for monkeypox
- People in certain occupational risk groups1
1People at risk for occupational exposure to orthopoxviruses include research laboratory workers performing diagnostic testing for Monkeypox virus, and members of health care worker response teams designated by appropriate public health and antiterror authorities (see ACIP recommendations).
- Kauai residents can schedule appointments by calling 808-241-3495
For further information, please visit: https://health.hawaii.gov/docd/disease_listing/monkeypox/