Nova Scotia has its first confirmed case of monkeypox in a resident in the province.
The person got the illness while travelling outside the province. Symptoms appeared after the person’s return to Nova Scotia. Public Health has been following this case closely and has identified only one low-risk contact.
“Monkeypox cases have been reported in other Canadian jurisdictions, but the risk of exposure remains low,” said Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s Chief Medical Officer of Health. “Nova Scotia is working closely with the Public Health Agency of Canada to monitor the situation here and across the country.”
Monkeypox is spread through very close, intimate person-to-person contact, and so far, has been reported mostly among men who identify as gay or bisexual, or men who have sex with men.
The Province is currently reserving its very small allotment of 160 doses of vaccine for those at the highest risk of infection, such as those who are deemed close contacts of someone with monkeypox.
The Province is working with the federal government to quickly increase Nova Scotia’s supply of the monkeypox vaccine, Imvamune. The Province has also been working closely with groups including Sexual Health Nova Scotia, prideHealth and the AIDS Coalition of Nova Scotia as it moves to establish a pre-exposure vaccination program targeted to high-risk groups.
More information about monkeypox, including how it spreads and what symptoms to look for, can be found at: https://novascotia.ca/monkeypox/
— monkeypox spreads through close contact with an infected person, including sexual activity, direct contact with monkeypox sores (including scabs or sores that are healing), inhaling respiratory droplets (from coughs or sneezes) from an infected person and contact with contaminated items like bedding or clothing
— monkeypox symptoms usually develop five to 21 days after exposure to the virus
— monkeypox typically presents initially with fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes, headache, muscle pain, joint pain, back pain and exhaustion; symptoms can progress one to two days later and can include a rash or sores that usually start on the face, legs or arms and can affect other parts of the body (including hands, feet, mouth and genitals)
Government of Canada monkeypox resource page: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/monkeypox.html