Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox infections are typically not severe but can be serious, especially for children and people who are immune compromised or pregnant. On July 28, 2022, the Yakima Health District identified the first case of monkeypox in Yakima County. 

Click here to view the monkeypox case counts in Washington state, by county.

Vaccine availability

Currently, vaccine supply is limited and prioritized to high-risk close contacts of confirmed and probable monkeypox cases. More information will be shared as we learn more about vaccine availability.

How does monkeypox spread?

Monkeypox spreads by very close and/or prolonged contact with someone with symptoms, such as:

  • Direct contact (sexual or non-sexual) with the skin or body fluids
  • Contact with contaminated objects (towels, bedding, and utensils)
  • Respiratory droplets during direct and prolonged face-to-face contact

What are the symptoms?

Monkeypox can cause a rash that can look like pimples or blisters anywhere on the body, more often on the face, mouth, hands, genitals, or anus. Other symptoms may include fever, headache, muscle aches, chills, and fatigue. These symptoms may occur before or after the rash appears, or not at all. 

Symptoms usually appear 1 to 3 weeks after exposure.

monkeypox symptoms pic

What should you do if you have symptoms?

You can spread monkeypox from the start of symptoms until the rash has fully healed, which can take 2-4 weeks. To keep from spreading the infection:

  • Talk to your healthcare provider and find out if you should be tested
  •  If you don't have a healthcare provider, call 2-1-1
  • Separate yourself from other people and from animals
  • Wear a well-fitted medical mask when in close contact with others
  • Avoid sex or intimate contact
  • Remain separated until the rash is gone, all scabs have fallen off, and the skin below is healed

What should you do if you are a close contact?

If you have had close contact with a person who has confirmed or probable monkeypox, contact your healthcare provider. If you don't have a healthcare provider, call 2-1-1.. For people who have had recent contact with someone with monkeypox, the vaccine can reduce the chance of developing infection. Close contact can include being together for several hours, hugging, cuddling, kissing, or sharing a bed.

Monkeypox Transmission Risk

Activities that involve physical and prolonged contact with an infected person may increase a person's risk of contracting monkeypox.

Monkeypox Transmission Risk Chart

Have more questions?

Call 1-833-829-HELP if you have questions about MPV risk factors, vaccines, testing, or treatment. Language assistance is available in 240 languages.

Through an ongoing partnership with Washington 211, this service is available from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Monday, and 6:00 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and observed state holidays. Call takers will not be able to schedule vaccine appointments.

For people who are deaf, hard of hearing, and TTY users: Use your preferred relay service or dial 711, then 1-833-829-4357 (HELP).