Health officials have verified the country’s first monkeypox-related fatality.
The Los Angeles Department of Public Health revealed on Monday, September 12th, that a resident of LA had perished from the infection.
Prior to passing away from the sickness, it was said that the patient had been “hospitalized” and had been “severely immunocompromised.”
The agency released a statement alongside the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that read:
“Public Health sends heartfelt condolences and wishes of healing to the family and friends mourning the loss of their loved one.
“The resident was severely immunocompromised and had been hospitalized.
“To protect confidentiality and privacy, additional information on this case will not be made public.
“Persons severely immunocompromised who suspect they have monkeypox are encouraged to seek medical care and treatment early and remain under the care of a provider during their illness.”
Additionally, US citizens were advised to consult the website’s page on monkeypox for additional guidance.
The monkeypox virus, according to the World Health Organization, causes symptoms that are comparable to but less severe than those experienced in the past by smallpox victims.
Initial symptoms of the virus include flu-like symptoms including fever, enlarged lymph nodes, muscular pains, and severe headaches.
A rash often develops one to three days later, leading to lesions in specific body regions, however the severity of these lesions varies from case to case.
Close contact with lesions, bodily fluids, respiratory droplets, and infected objects like bedding can spread the infection from one person to another.
Following the discovery of more than 6,000 cases in the US, the Biden Administration formally proclaimed monkeypox a public health emergency last month.
According to Reuters, Xavier Becerra, secretary of health and human services, declared a state of emergency to free up medical resources and equipment to aid in the fight against the disease.
“We’re prepared to take our response to the next level in addressing this virus, and we urge every American to take monkeypox seriously and to take responsibility to help us tackle this virus,” he said in a call.
The US can now do 60,000–80,000 monkeypox tests every week, compared to only 6,000 when the virus first appeared, according to Becerra.
There are reportedly 22,630 confirmed cases in the nation as of the most recent CDC statistics.
People in the US who are 18 years of age or older and at high risk of infection can get a vaccination that has been licensed for the prevention of the monkeypox illness.