CLEVELAND (WJW) – “How are we working with our schools and childcare providers to kind of get the messaging out.”
Cleveland city council members got their questions answered directly from the experts Monday.
“I don’t think that monkeypox and the start of school will be tied to some kind of transmission event.”
Cleveland’s Director of Public Health Dr. David Margolius gave updates Monday about monkeypox, including the signs, symptoms, transmission, and prevention strategies.
As a cousin of smallpox, he says the vaccine works for both infections. And while there are only two or three cases of children getting the disease in the country, most of the cases have been in adult men.
“99% of the cases across the country and really much of the world that we know of right now have been in adult men, specifically in our country, it’s been adult men who have sex with men.”
There are currently 30,000 cases globally, 11,000 in the US, 92 cases in Ohio and 31 in Cleveland. That’s according to information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Cleveland Public Health.
Symptoms first present at the flu, then the recognizable rash with people most contagious until bumps scab over and heal.
“If somebody is currently seeking the vaccine within Cleveland what is your advice in terms of how to access it and what the timelines would be for its availability?”
Dr. Margolius says, “We sent a small amount to each of the health care systems, and we took the approach that we wanted them to reach out to their patients who were not only high risk but also a high risk of severe disease.”
The doctor also cited the racial disparities for the vaccine, since he says across the country, there are more Black people than white people who have gotten monkeypox, but more whites than Blacks actually getting the vaccine.
And as for the potential stigma in the gay community.
“That’s certainly a concern. We’re partnering closely with advocates from the LGBTQ community to get the messaging right.”
Ideas are being discussed of going door to door in each ward in the city, with information on monkeypox, how to fight it and how to get the vaccine.