2 probable cases of monkeypox identified in Ottawa County
Health officials say public is not in any immediate risk
The Ottawa County Department of Public Health is urging caution after two probable cases of monkeypox have been identified.
To protect patient privacy, The Ottawa County Department of Public Health wouldn't say who or how the two contracted monkeypox only to say that the two people are in isolation while health officials are identifying and monitoring any close contacts for symptoms.
According to the Department, monkeypox is an infectious disease caused by a virus found in some wildlife species of central and western Africa. Symptoms include fever, headache, exhaustion and a rash that often appears on the face and body a few days after symptoms begin.
Alison Clark is the Ottawa County Department of Public Health's Communication Specialist.
"We would like the public to be aware of monkeypox, the symptoms of monkeypox, how it is spread and how it can be prevented,” Clark said. “But we don’t want the public to panic, the risk of infection (in Ottawa County) is low,” she said.
Clark says to prevent the spread, avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like monkeypox., do not kiss, hug, cuddle or have sex with someone with monkeypox, or touch their bedding, and to frequently wash your hands with soap.
According to a press release, the probable cases are pending confirmation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but are believed to be positive.