WICHITA, Kansas (KWCH) – A global outbreak of monkeypox has hit the United States in recent months, as doctors in New York confirmed the first case of polio in the United States in nearly a decade.
While Kansas has just one known confirmed case of monkeypox, doctors say it’s only a matter of time before that number increases, with neighboring states seeing more cases. Reviewing public health situations across Kansas and the U.S. Sedgwick County health official, Dr. Garold Minns offered perspective on what the state is seeing.
“I have no doubt that we are going to see more cases because our borders are porous,” he said of monkeypox. “People cross borders all the time. People come to Kansas City, Kansas from Kansas City, Missouri.
He said the disease spreads easily through skin-to-skin contact. Currently, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment has said testing for monkeypox should be done by health care providers and vaccines will only be given to people who are infected or have been in contact. with an infected person.
Dr Minns said this may be the case for the foreseeable future.
“there are so few,” he said of the monkeypox vaccine. “I think most of the supply goes to states that are seeing a lot of cases.”
Along with polio, New York is the only state to report a case, but more are expected with the virus detected in sewage samples. Dr. Minns said that shouldn’t be a serious concern for Kansas at this point because most people are vaccinated against polio at a young age. He said most of those who contract the virus have not been vaccinated.
“Ninety-nine percent of us had to get vaccinated. It is a very effective vaccine,” he said of polio protection. “It’s extremely rare in the United States. In fact, if we see a case of poliomyelitis, I can tell you that we will take care of it right away and find out where they got it.
Dr Minns also stressed that if monkeypox or polio became a threat closer to home, Kansans should listen to medical experts, not social media.
“Much more trust in your doctor than Facebook,” he said.
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