As the monkeypox outbreak continues to spread worldwide, cases across U.S. states are rising – with three governors declaring states of emergency in the last week.
Confirmed cases of monkeypox have now surpassed 23,600 worldwide, according to Monday numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The outbreak, first spotted in Europe in late April, has reached 80 countries – the vast majority in nations that hadn’t previously had significant caseloads of the rare, viral infection.
The World Health Organization said monkeypox was a global health emergency late last month.
The U.S. had reported more than 5,800 confirmed cases as of Monday, per the CDC. Highly-populated states are leading the numbers – with 1,390 cases in New York, followed by 827 cases in California.
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States declaring emergency over monkeypox
On Monday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a state of emergency, and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker declared the outbreak a public health emergency. Declaring an emergency expands resources such as vaccine distribution.
“We’ll continue to work with the federal government to secure more vaccines, raise awareness about reducing risk, and stand with the LGBTQ community fighting stigmatization,” Newsom said in a statement Monday.
Friday, Gov. Kathy Hochul also declared New York‘s outbreak as a state disaster emergency.
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US public health emergency?
On Monday, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said that 1.1 million doses of the monkeypox vaccine have been distributed across the country, including 737,000 doses over the past few days.
When asked if President Joe Biden plans to declare a nationwide public health emergency, Jean-Pierre said the decision rests with Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra.
But, “we are considering every policy option to help end this outbreak,” she said. “That is urgent, and that is important to us.”
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Monkeypox does not usually cause serious illness – however, it can result in hospitalization or death. The virus is spread through close, physical contact. The current outbreak is impacting some populations more than others, notably men who have sex with men, but health officials stress that the virus can infect anyone.
Monkeypox cases by state
Here’s where confirmed cases stand across U.S. states and territories, according to CDC numbers from Monday, August 1.
District of Columbia: 243
Montana: No confirmed cases reported by the CDC yet.
New Hampshire: 12
New Jersey: 155
New Mexico: 10
New York: 1390
North Carolina: 60
North Dakota: 1
Puerto Rico: 19
Rhode Island: 23
South Carolina: 21
South Dakota: 1
West Virginia: 3
Wyoming: No confirmed cases reported by the CDC yet.
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Contributing: Michael Collins, Karen Weintraub, USA TODAY. The Associated Press.