FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Florida reported its first pediatric case of monkeypox since the outbreak began in May, according to the Florida Department of Health.
The state public health officials reported the case was in Martin County and it involved a child younger than four years old.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported there are at least seven pediatric cases and the others are in Washington, D.C, California, Indiana, and Maine.
The World Health Organization identified the growing international outbreak of the rare disease was mostly affecting men who have sex with men and those who were living with HIV were at high risk.
There have been 11,890 confirmed cases in the U.S. since the outbreak began on May 17, including 1,085 in Florida, according to the CDC data available on Tuesday afternoon.
From May 17 to Aug. 15, the state’s DOH has confirmed 513 confirmed monkeypox cases in Miami-Dade County, 446 monkeypox cases in Broward County, and 14 cases in Monroe County.
Dr. Ulyee Choe, of the state’s Department of Health, said on Monday during a news conference that the severity of the illness during this outbreak has been mild.
The viral disease usually begins with flu-like symptoms and progresses to a skin rash.
“I have seen that like it’s painful. That it leaves scars on the skin which is not something I want,” Ritchie Pevo said after receiving his first shot of the vaccine on Tuesday.
Human-to-human transmission generally requires direct contact with an active rash. This is more likely through sexual contact. It also spreads through indirect contact with a fabric that has had direct contact with an active rash.
Epidemiologists tracked the initial outbreak in Europe and North America to two festivals for gay men in Spain and Belgium.
Both state and federal officials are rationing the limited supply of the Jynneos monkeypox vaccines. The state is prioritizing the first of the two-dose vaccine. The feds are reducing the dose to stretch the supply with applications just under the skin of the forearm.
Choe said that a study showed a “pretty comparable” response whether the vaccine is injected subcutaneously or epidermally so that’s why the U.S. Food and Drug Administration arrived at that conclusion.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reported having shipped 65,960 Jynneos monkeypox vaccines to Florida with a total state allocation of 109,284 as of Aug. 12. Officials plan to allocate 25% of the vaccines to case burden and 75% to at-risk individuals.
Broward County has seven appointment-only vaccine sites including a new one that opened Tuesday at Mills Pond Park, at 2201 NW 9 Ave., in Fort Lauderdale. Miami-Dade County has two.
For more information about vaccine appointments in Florida, visit this page or call 850-245-4444.
- For information about appointments in Broward County, visit this page or call 954-467-4700.
- For information about appointments in Miami-Dade County, visit this page or call 305-470-5660.