Health Commissioner Dr. Irina Gelman announced on July 20 that Orange County’s first case of monkeypox (orthopoxvirus) has officially been identified.
Monkeypox is a viral infection that is extremely rare, which often does not cause serious illness; however, it can lead to hospitalization and death, especially if left untreated. Infections spread through close physical contact between individuals or between individuals and contaminated objects, and typically last about two to four weeks.
As of July 18, there have been at least 651 confirmed cases of monkeypox identified throughout New York State, the vast majority of which (an estimated 618) are in New York City. The first infection outside of New York City was identified in Sullivan County on June 7. Additional monkeypox infections have been reported and confirmed in Westchester, Suffolk, Nassau, Monroe, Erie, Chemung, Albany, Rockland and St. Lawrence Counties.
“Orange County has demonstrated our ability to respond to the spread of communicable disease in the past,” Dr. Gelman said. “We continue to be in contact with the State Department of Health to ensure we have the resources necessary to protect our residents.”