As of June 6, global cases of Monkeypox, a virus similar to smallpox, surpassed 1,000 in about 30 different countries. In response to the rise in confirmed cases, the Center of Diseases Control and Prevention has increased its travel advisory to a Level 2 warning.
At the new guidance level, travelers should practice more preventive measures than usual. This includes avoiding close contact with sick people and avoiding contact with dead or live wild animals.
Monkeypox is a rare disease originating from Africa that is known to be spread through contact with sick animals. As of now, the disease is not a major risk to the general public. But experts say it’s important to know what to look out for in terms of symptoms.
Monkeypox is characterized by skin lesions or rashes, alongside symptoms such as fever, swollen glands or muscle aches. The virus spreads primarily through skin-to-skin contact, particularly with scabs, sores or bodily fluids. Disease experts also say there can be instances where the virus can be airborne, according to The New York Times. But it’s unknown how much airborne transmission contributes to the current outbreak until more research is done.
As of now, the CDC is advising people to exert caution and reach out to their healthcare providers if they believe they have contracted the disease.