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Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with monkeypox virus that can affect anyone.

*At this time, cases of monkeypox are relatively rare in the United States. People who think they may have been exposed to monkeypox or who have symptoms of monkeypox should consult with a healthcare provider.

Monkeypox FAQ:

What is Monkeypox?

Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as smallpox. Monkeypox symptoms are similar to smallpox, but milder; and monkeypox is rarely fatal. Monkeypox is not related to chickenpox.

What are the symptoms of Monkeypox?

The most common early symptoms are similar to the flu and may include:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Backache
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Chills

As the infection continues, additional symptoms may include:

  • Blister-like rash (however, sometimes the rash appears before the early symptoms above)
  • Fever
  • Drenching sweats
  • Muscle aches
  • Headache

*Monkeypox illness typically lasts 2-4 weeks and persons are considered infectious until all lesions have resolved and a healthy new layer of skin has formed.

How does Monkeypox spread?

  • Monkeypox can spread from person-to-person through:
    • Direct contact with the infectious rash, scabs, or body fluids
    • Respiratory secretions during prolonged, face-to-face contact, or during intimate physical contact, such as kissing, cuddling, or sex
    • Touching items (such as clothing or linens) that previously touched the infectious rash or body fluids
  • Pregnant people can spread the virus to their fetus through the placenta. 
  • It’s also possible for people to get monkeypox from infected animals, either by being scratched or bitten by the animal or by preparing or eating meat or using products from an infected animal.

How can Monkeypox be prevented?

  • Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like monkeypox.
  • 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
  • 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.
  • In Central and West Africa, avoid contact with animals that can spread monkeypox virus, usually rodents and primates. Also, avoid sick or dead animals, as well as bedding or other materials they have touched.

What should I do if I think I might have monkeypox?

  • Seek medical care immediately.
  • Make sure to call the medical office before you arrive so that they can be ready to isolate you from other people.
  • Wear a mask to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets.
  • If you have an active rash or other symptoms, stay in a separate room or area away from people or pets you live with, when possible

Monkeypox Vaccine FAQ: 

Is there a vaccine for Monkeypox?

The vaccine for Monkeypox is called JYNNEOS™ (also known as Imvamune or Imvanex). The vaccine is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for prevention of smallpox and monkeypox disease in adults 18 years or older at high risk for smallpox or monkeypox infection.

JYNNEOS™ is usually administered as a series of 2 injections, 4 weeks apart. People who have received smallpox vaccine in the past might only need 1 dose.

Who can get vaccinated?

With the current limited supply of JYNNEOS vaccine in New Jersey, the following residents may be eligible for vaccination*

Who can get vaccinated?

  • People who have known contact with someone who tested positive for orthopoxvirus or monkeypox virus within the past 14 days
  • People who attended an event where known monkeypox exposure occurred within past 14 days
  • People who identify as gay, bisexual, or men who have sex with men (MSM), and/or transgender, gender non-conforming, or gender non-binary and who have a history of multiple or anonymous sex partners within past 14 days

*New Jersey is expecting additional doses from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and as the State gets additional supply the Department will continue to expand access to the vaccine.

Where can I get more information on how to make an appointment?

Information on vaccination appointments can be found by calling the organizations listed below. You must call to make an appointment, walk ins will not be accepted.

  • Hyacinth AIDS Foundation/Project Living Out Loud!
    • Location: 653-655 Newark Ave., 2nd Floor Jersey City, NJ 07306Phone: 201-706- 3480
  • The Prevention Resource Network, a program of the Visiting Nurse Association of Central Jersey: Asbury Park
    • Location: 816 Sunset Ave, Asbury Park, NJ 07712 
    • Phone: 732-502-5100
  • Bergen New Bridge Medical Center:  
    • Location: Annex 2 (white tent structure), 230 East Ridgewood Ave, Paramus:
    • Make an appointment through their website:  New Bridge Health
  • North Jersey Community Research Initiative (NJCRI): Newark
    • Location:  393 Central Ave, Newark, NJ 07103
    • Contact Person: Amanda Medina
    • Phone: 973-483- 3444, ext. 200
    • Appointment Days &  Times: Mondays and Thursdays (8:30 am - 5:30 pm) & Tuesdays to Fridays (8:30 am - 4:30 pm) Appointments will be available every 15 minutes. 
  • Cooper Vaccine & Testing Clinic 
    • Location: Cooper University Hospital, 300 Broadway, Camden. (At the intersection of Broadway and MLK Boulevard. Entrance off of MLK Boulevard. Follow the signs; do not drive into the parking garage.)
    • To make an appointment either call or go to their website. Phone: call 856-968-7100, Website; MyCooper Health
    • Appointment Time & Date: Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.,
  • Eric B. Chandler Health Center
    • Location: 277 George St, New Brunswick
    • Phone: 732-235-6733
  • Passaic County Health Department
    • Location: 930 Riverview, Rear, Suite 250, Totowa
    • Phone: 973-881-4396
  • Zufall Health Center 
    • Location: 18 West Blackwell St, Dover
    • Phone: 973-891-3419

For more information about Monkeypox, visit: 

NJ Department of Health Monkeypox

NJ Department of Health: Monkeypox Dashboard

CDC Information on Monkeypox

WHO Information on Monkeypox

Last Updated: Mon, 08/22/2022 - 4:41pm