Virginia reports 1st monkeypox death


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The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reported the first death of a person infected with monkeypox, now known as “mbox,” in Virginia. The patient was a resident of the Eastern Virginia Health District.


“Our thoughts are with the family of the deceased at this difficult time,” he said State Health Commissioner Colin M. Greene, MD, MPH. “Mpox is a serious disease, especially for those with weakened immune systems. If you have been exposed to smallpox or develop symptoms consistent with the disease, we urge you to seek medical advice now.”

People should call their healthcare provider if they have a fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes, and a new, unexplained rash. People diagnosed with chickenpox should stay home and avoid close contact with others until the rash has completely resolved, the crust has fallen off, and a new layer of healthy skin has formed.

For most people, getting chickenpox is painful but not life-threatening.

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Mpox is a preventable disease that spreads from person to person through close contact. There are things everyone can do to help prevent the spread of smallpox:

  • Avoid skin-to-skin contact with someone who has a new, unexplained rash.
  • Do not share cups, utensils, bedding, or towels with a sick person.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer after contact with infected people or animals.
  • Wear a mask in situations where you may have prolonged or close face-to-face contact with people who may be infected.
  • For those who qualify, consider discussing the JYNNEOS vaccine with your healthcare provider.

People who have been exposed to smallpox should receive the vaccine as soon as possible to reduce the chance of contracting smallpox after exposure. The vaccine is most effective if given within 4 days of exposure, but it can be given up to 14 days after exposure.

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