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Monkey Pox - What you need to nowMonkeypox (MPX)

Updated 08/10/23

MPX is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus.  Monkeypox can infect animals, such as monkeys and rodents, as well as humans.  The monkeypox virus belongs to the same group of viruses that cause smallpox and is not related to chicken pox.  The first case of  human monkeypox was recorded in 1970.  Since then, monkeypox has been reported in people in several other central and western African countries.  Prior to the current outbreak, nearly all monkeypox cases in people outside of Africa were linked to international travel to countries where the disease commonly occurs, or through imported animals. 

In May 2022, several clusters of monkeypox were reported in countries that don't normally report human monkeypox cases, including the United States.  On Friday, August 26, the Maryland Department of Health published a monkeypox data dashboard.  

Montgomery County currently offers vaccination for MPX to all residents.  Per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccination against MPX is recommended if:

  • You had known exposure to someone with MPX
  • You had a sex partner in the past 2 weeks who was diagnosed with MPX
  • You are a gay, bisexual or other man who has sex with men or a transgender, nonbinary, or gender diverse person who in the past 6 months has had any of the following:
    • A new diagnosis of one or more sexually transmitted infections (chlamydia, gonorrhea, or syphilis)
    • More than one sex partner

You have had any of the following in the past 6 months:

  • Sex at a commercial sex venue (like a club or bathhouse)
  • Sex related to a large commercial event or in a geographic area (city or county) where MPX virus transmission is occurring.
  • Sex in exchange for money or other items
  • You have a sex partner with any of the above risk.
  • You have HIV or other causes of immune suppression and have had recent or anticipate future risk of MPX exposure from any of the above scenarios.
  • You work in setting where you may be exposed to MPX.
If you have specific questions related to MPX you may email [email protected] or call 240-777-1760.

Monkeypox (MPX) Resources from Maryland Department of Health website

More Information

For more information about monkeypox, visit the CDC website .