THE dramatic spike in monkeypox cases has lead to the CDC launching a new emergency center as infections in the US reach 306.
The CDC said it was launching its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to cope with the influx of cases across the country.
The EOC “allows the [CDC] to further increase operation support” to meet the rapid spread of the virus, read a statement on the heath authority’s website.
The response center is home to 300 staff who will work in collaboration with local, national, and international partner to curb the spread, the statement said.
It comes as the CDC boosted its monkeypox testing capacity last week by sending testing kits to five commercial laboratories.
It said the move was aimed at “increased testing, leverage established relationships between clinics, hospitals and commercial laboratories, and support our ability to better understand the scope of the current monkeypox outbreak”.
The US has seen a dramatic spike in monkeypox cases in the last seven days.
California has registered the most confirmed cases – 66 – while New York trailed behind.
The city of New York’s official website revealed on Monday that 48 people had tested positive – a figures which has now risen to 63.
Most read in The US Sun
“Most of these people have had mild illness, have not been hospitalized and have recovered on their own,” the website explains.
“Even with mild illness, the rash and sores from monkeypox can be itchy and painful.”
The website adds the spread has mostly been among “social networks of gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men”, and warned the community was now “at greater risk of exposure”.
On Wednesday, Illinois clocked 45 infections, followed by Florida on 27 and DC with 20, according to the CDC’s moneypox tracker – bringing the total number of cases across the US to 306.
Arizona, Kentucky, Nebraska, Oregon, and Rhode Island have all registered one case each.
The CDC has released new guidance about how to identify monkeypox during the outbreak.
Traditionally, people with monkeypox have developed a fever, swollen lymph nodes, headaches and muscle aches.
The symptoms are followed by a rash that starts on their face or mouth and then spreads to other parts of their body – particularly the hands and feet.
However, in some recent cases, patients first experienced a rash in the mouth or around the genitals or anus.
And instead of widespread rashes, some patients saw scattered or localized lesions in areas other than the face, hands, or feet.
At times, flu-like symptoms developed after the rash, but other people didn’t have those symptoms at all.