Medical experts weigh in on monkeypox after first case confirmed in Leon County
The Florida Department of Health in Leon is working to notify people who may have been exposed.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Health experts in Leon County are calling monkeypox a public health concern- but not a cause for panic- just days after a case was confirmed in a county resident.
The Florida Department of Health in Leon is working to notify people who may have been exposed. They are also reporting one additional “probable” case of monkeypox. The vast majority of cases in the sunshine state have been reported in Broward and Miami-Dade counties. DOH is reporting 938 cases total as of Sunday evening.
In the meantime, health officials at FAMU and FSU are sharing their perspective on the virus.
”The average person should understand that right now at this moment they are at very low risk,” Dr. George Rust with FSU Medicine said.
The illness has been spreading among the LGBTQ+ community, raising safety concerns. Dr. Rust said there are things people can do to lower their risk and ease fears.
“Limiting the number of sexual contacts that you have, being aware of how that it spread, being aware of a rash or sores that you get them checked out,” Dr. Rust said.
As students head back to local universities, FAMU Health Services Director Tanya Tatum said college students may be at greater risk than students attending K-12.
She is encouraging college students to avoid behaviors that could expose them to monkeypox.
“It’s really transmitted more so through skin to skin contact, through respiratory droplets, kissing, sharing eating utensils, things like that,” Tatum said.
Tatum also points out that monkeypox is not as easily spread as COVID-19.
As for vaccines, the supply is still limited and DOH is reserving them for high-risk groups as they become available from the federal government.
You can read more about the virus and the vaccine on the CDC’s website.
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