The West Central Florida County Health Departments are Responding to and Monitoring the Nationwide Monkeypox Outbreak
July 29, 2022
Pasco County, Fla – The West Central Florida County Health Departments are responding to and monitoring the monkeypox outbreak. There are cases of monkeypox in at least 43 states and Washington DC. To date, there have been no monkeypox-related deaths outside of endemic countries. The risk of monkeypox to the general population remains low.
In the event of a monkeypox case, the West Central Florida County Health Departments will conduct and continue to conduct epidemiological investigations to notify possible exposures and offer potential post-exposure prophylaxis. The West Central Florida County Health Departments will offer the monkeypox vaccine to high-risk groups as doses become available from the federal government.
Prevention and Treatment
If health care providers suspect a possible case of monkeypox, immediately contact your local health department or the 24/7 disease reporting hotline at 850-245-4401. Local county health departments can help providers obtain monkeypox virus-specific real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing.
Human-to-human transmission generally requires prolonged, face-to-face contact, direct contact with lesion materials, or indirect contact with lesion materials through contaminated items, such as contaminated clothing. Therefore, the risk of exposure remains low.
Health care providers should remain vigilant of information related to monkeypox:
- Monkeypox symptoms, especially among individuals with relevant travel history.
- Transmission and incubation
- Specimen collection.
- Infection control procedures in the home and hospital
- Clinical recognition, and the characteristic rash associated with monkeypox.
- Prophylaxis and possible treatments for monkeypox.
- Monitoring of those exposed to monkeypox.
The public should also remain vigilant of the current meningococcal outbreak. Demographic impacts are similar among meningococcal and monkeypox cases. The meningococcal vaccines are available to high-risk populations at every county health department, free of charge. Floridians can find more information on meningococcal disease here.
For more information or questions, please contact your county health department.
About the Florida Department of Health
The Florida Department of Health, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote, and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, and community efforts.