Monkeypox reported in Canyon County. Here's where Idaho's vaccine response stands.

Spain Monkeypox
Posted at 4:27 PM, Jul 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-29 18:27:31-04

CALDWELL, Idaho — Southwest District Health announced the first case of monkeypox in its jurisdiction on Friday in Canyon County. Idaho's first reported case was announced on July 6 in the Central District Health jurisdiction.

Contact tracing efforts are underway to identify close contacts and notify any risk of exposure.

Testing was performed at the Idaho Bureau of Laboratories and samples are being sent to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention for confirmation. Results from the CDC are expected in the next week.

Related: CDC: Idaho now has 3 cases of Monkeypox

Monkeypox usually causes a mild illness, and most people recover on their own. Antivirals are available for patients who might have severe disease or develop complications. Individuals with monkeypox should self-isolate until their lesions have fully healed with new skin where the lesions used to be.

Here's what Southwest District Health wants people to know.

How is monkeypox spread?  

Monkeypox can spread to anyone through close, personal, often skin-to-skin contact, including:

  • Direct contact with monkeypox rash, scabs, or body fluids from a person with monkeypox.
  • Touching objects, fabrics (clothing, bedding, or towels), and surfaces that have been used by someone with monkeypox. 
  • Contact with respiratory secretions. 

What are the symptoms of monkeypox? 

Close contacts should be monitored for symptoms for 21 days after their last exposure. Symptoms of concern include:

  • Fever
  • Chills  
  • Swelling of the lymph nodes  
  • New skin rash - Rash may look like pimples or blisters.  

Fever and rash occur in nearly all people infected with the monkeypox virus. If symptoms develop, you should immediately self-isolate and call your doctor.

How to prevent monkeypox? 

  • Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that may be monkeypox. 
  • Do not handle or touch the bedding, towels, or clothing of a person with monkeypox. 
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. 
  • Do not touch the rash or scabs of a person with monkeypox. 
  • Do not kiss, hug, cuddle or have sex with someone with monkeypox. 
  • Do not share eating utensils or cups with a person with monkeypox. 

Related: A look at the delayed US response to monkeypox

Idaho's vaccine response to Monkeypox

Idaho recently was allocated over 400 doses of the Monkeypox vaccine.
reg Stahl, a spokesperson for the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare said "(The) monkeypox vaccine is being used in Idaho for post-exposure prophylaxis, and planning for pre-exposure prophylaxis is in progress."

No details were provided on when the vaccine could be available for pre-exposure. More doses of the vaccine will be made available in the coming months from the Strategic National Stockpile.