Officials in Kane County announced Monday that they have received their first shipments of a vaccine to combat monkeypox, with two confirmed cases having been reported within the county this year.
According to the press release, the county’s Health Department received its first shipment of the JYNNEOS vaccine on Friday.
The shipment was part of an initiative launched by the Illinois Department of Public Health, which is shipping vaccine doses to counties that have reported positive cases of the monkeypox virus.
Officials say that under the parameters of the IDPH program, priority access will be given to those who have had close contact to the virus, or who are in so-called “high risk priority groups,” per the press release.
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According to IDPH, there have been several outbreaks of monkeypox reported in both Europe and the United States.
The virus, which is part of the same family of viruses that causes smallpox, causes numerous symptoms, including:
-Swollen lymph nodes
-Rash resembling blisters on the face, inside the mouth, and on the hands, feet, chest or other parts of the body
The virus can be spread through direct contact with the infectious rash, scabs or bodily fluids. It can also be spread through intimate physical contact, or by touching items that have previously been touched by infectious rashes or bodily fluids.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending that individuals who have been exposed to monkeypox, or those that are at a higher risk of being exposed to monkeypox, be vaccinated against the virus.
If a patient has symptoms of the virus, they are encouraged to speak to their health care providers, even if they don’t believe that they have had contact with someone who has the virus.
According to the latest figures from the CDC, nearly 2,000 cases of the virus have been reported so far in the United States. More than 13,000 cases of the virus have been reported in countries that typically do not report monkeypox cases, according to CDC data.
Officials with the Department of Health and Human Services say that more than 132,000 doses of the JYNNEOS vaccine have been distributed to state health departments. From there, those departments can determine who to administer the treatment, with Illinois opting to send it to counties where cases of the virus have been reported.
The state of Illinois has been allocated 1,317 doses of the vaccine, according to HHS data.
An additional 2.5 million doses of the vaccine have been ordered by HHS during the outbreak, according to officials.