Prevention Measures

Prevention Measures for You, Your Home, and Your Pets

For you

Symptoms

Monkeypox causes a rash that looks like pimples or blisters that are painful or itchy. This rash can appear anywhere on or in the body.

Other symptoms may or may not include fever, headache, muscle or backaches, exhaustion, and swollen lymph nodes.

Most infections last 2 to 4 weeks and resolve without treatment. Monkeypox is very rarely fatal and there is treatment available! If you have symptoms or may have been exposed, please contact your healthcare provider

Resources

 

Transmission

Current risk to the public for getting monkeypox is low. It is important to know how monkeypox is spread so that you can make informed decisions! The most common method of spread is through sexual activity, contact with materials used during sex, and through households of those with monkeypox. Transmission requires vigorous rubbing of infected sores, scabs, or body fluids directly or indirectly (through objects) to another person – it is much less contagious than COVID-19. Take prevention measures to keep yourself and others safe.

 

How to Protect Yourself

  • Avoid close, skin to skin contact with people who have a rash or have been exposed to monkeypox
  • Consider exchanging information with sexual partners and discussing monkeypox
  • Consider reducing your number of sexual partners or one-time sexual encounters
  • Think about avoiding crowded places where there is lots of skin-to-skin contact
  • Get vaccinated
  • Wash your hands with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand rub
  • Wear gloves when handling materials that have been in contact with an infected person or animal

 

Who can get vaccinated?

  • Gay, bisexual, or other men who have sex with men and/or transgender, gender non-conforming, non-binary people.
  • People who are at least 18 years old.
  • People who have had multiple or anonymous sex partners in the last 2 weeks.
  • Laboratory and healthcare workers.
  • People who have had contact with someone who has monkeypox.

There are currently two vaccines approved under FDA Emergency Use Authorization for monkeypox, JYNNEOS and ACAM2000. These vaccines are being used as post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) within 4 days after exposure, post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP)++ for those with high risk factors that make them more likely to get monkeypox, and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for those with high risk for exposure. There is currently limited supply of these vaccines, so if you are in one of these categories and/or may have been exposed, please contact your healthcare provider.

Learn more about vaccines and treatment.

 

People at high risk of severe illness should take additional precautions

  • Those with weakened immune systems
  • Those with atopic dermatitis or eczema
  • Pregnant people
  • Kids under 8 years old

 

For your home

Monkeypox virus is an enveloped virus, which means it’s one of the easiest to kill in the environment! By taking simple and easy precautions, you can clean and disinfect your home! Follow the steps below if someone in your home has monkeypox, or if you’d just like to take extra precaution! The EPA's website has a list of approved products to kill monkeypox in the environment.

 

Steps to Clean and Disinfect Monkeypox Virus

Wear disposable medical gloves, a well-fitting mask or respirator, and clothing that covers your skin

  • Collect garbage in a sealed bag.
  • Laundry
    • Collect laundry in sealed bag and move to laundry area.
    • Wash laundry in a standard washing machine with detergent. Use hot water to kill virus faster and bleach or sanitizers if you wish, but they are not necessary. NOTE: Make sure not to shake laundry!
    • Throw out or clean bag used to transport laundry.
  • Clean Hard Surfaces
    • Clean surfaces, appliances, and interiors—anything that may have come in contact with the virus.
    • Wash dishes in a dishwasher with detergent or by hand with hot water and dish soap.
  • Clean Porous Surfaces
    • Clean porous surfaces such as furniture.
    • Use an appropriate disinfectant and consider steam cleaning for bodily fluids. Use coversheets, blankets, or a waterproof mattress cover to cover furniture for easier cleaning.
  • Clean the Floor and Carpet
    • Use wipes, spray, and mopping.
    • Vacuum with a high-efficiency air filter is possible OR use a well-fitting mask or respirator if one is not available. Do NOT sweep or dry dust—this will stir up the virus into the environment.
  • Throw out trash using regular waste disposal methods.

 

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For your pets

Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease- which means that animals can get it too! There has currently been a report of human to dog transmission, but all mammals are susceptible, especially rodents. Pets can contact monkeypox in the same way that people can, so limit close contact and don’t share bedding.

If someone in your household has monkeypox take the following preventative measures:

  • Do not kiss, hug, or share a bed with your pet.
  • Do not surrender or euthanize your pet.
  • Take extra care cleaning and disinfecting your home.
  • If your pet shows symptoms, contact your veterinarian.

If you haven’t had close contact with your pet, ask someone to care for your pet until fully recovered.

If you have had close contact with your pet, keep them away from people and animals for 21 days.

 

Resources