East Hartford Health Department Shares Resources to Inform Residents about Preventing the Spread of Monkeypox

Government and Politics

August 13, 2022

From: Town Of East Hartford

East Hartford Health Department Shares Resources to Inform Residents about Preventing the Spread of Monkeypox

East Hartford, CT – The Town of East Hartford and the East Hartford Health Department are advising residents to access educational resources and learn about preventing the spread of monkeypox. Since early May 2022, cases have been reported in more than 80 countries that normally don’t report monkeypox, including the United States. There have been more than 10,768 cases, with cases confirmed in nearly every state, including 57 in Connecticut.

The most common symptom is a rash or sores that can look like pimples or blisters. These may be all over the body or just in certain parts, such as the face, hands or feet, as well as on or inside the mouth, genitals or anus. The rash and sores can be extremely itchy and painful, and sores in the anus or urethra can make it hard to use the bathroom. Some people also have flu-like symptoms, such as sore throat, fever, swollen lymph nodes, headache and tiredness.  Anyone with a rash that looks like monkeypox should contact their healthcare provider, even if they are not sure whether they had contact with someone who has monkeypox.

“It’s important for persons to understand how monkeypox is spread, how to reduce their risk of exposure, and whether you are recommended to receive the JYNNEOS vaccine to reduce your chance of getting monkeypox,” said Laurence Burnsed, Director of Health. 

Information and resources are available on the East Hartford Health Department’s monkeypox webpage.  Individuals can also contact the Health Department at 860-291-7324 to speak with a public health nurse.

Anyone can get and spread monkeypox. However, cases occurring to date are primarily spreading through sexual and other intimate contact among social networks of gay, bisexual and other men who have sexual contact with men (MSM); transgender people; gender-nonconforming people; and non-binary people.  Persons who have multiple or anonymous sex partners are at higher-risk of exposure to monkeypox. Transmission can also occur from person-to-person through direct contact with the rash, scabs, or body fluids; respiratory secretions through prolonged, intimate physical contact; and touching items that previously touched the rash or body fluids of an infected person (clothing, linens, etc.).  Pregnant persons can spread the virus to their fetus through the placenta.

There is currently a limited supply of JYNNEOS vaccine prioritized for individuals at the highest risk of exposure to someone with monkeypox. Persons with symptoms who have had close personal contact with someone with known monkeypox in the past 14 days should contact their health care provider. Vaccine is also recommended for people who meet all of the following criteria:

- Gay, bisexual, or other men who have sex with men, and/or transgender, gender non-conforming, or gender non-binary;

- Have had multiple or anonymous sex partners in the past 14 days; and

- Age 18 or older.

Vaccination for eligible persons is by appointment only through limited number of community partner locations; the list of locations and criteria can be accessed at Monkeypox Vaccination (ct.gov).  Please note insurance is not required and vaccine is available at no cost to any eligible persons.

Information about monkeypox, including testing, vaccination, and what to do when sick or caring for a person with monkeypox, can be accessed via the East Hartford Health Department monkeypox webpage, or by monitoring Town of East Hartford updates on social media.