San Francisco health officials warn of possible monkeypox exposure following Pride event

ByTim Johns KGO logo
Wednesday, July 6, 2022
SF officials warn of possible monkeypox exposure at Pride event
San Francisco health officials are warning of a possible monkeypox exposure after a Pride event attendee reported they tested positive for the virus.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A Facebook message posted Sunday, warning people about a possible exposure to monkeypox.

Following a Pride weekend event, organizer Comfort and Joy says they received a plausible report that one attendee tested positive for the virus.

"We did have an anonymous email that we received that a friend of this person had tested positive for monkeypox," said Jarrod Stanley, a spokesperson for Comfort and Joy.

RELATED: Multiple traces of monkeypox detected in Bay Area wastewater in the last week, officials say

There are currently more than a dozen monkeypox cases in San Francisco.

The virus can be spread by skin-to-skin contact, sexually, or through infected clothing.

The city's department of public health says it's important for people who have been exposed to monitor themselves.

"This is the time to self-assess. If you attended the event and you feel good, you feel comfortable, you don't see any symptoms or rashes, then it's likely you're in an okay place and just watch for the next two weeks," said Frank Strona, of the San Francisco Department of Public Health.

VIDEO: CDC releases new details about how monkeypox virus spreads, what to keep in mind

The CDC announced on Friday that monkeypox is not thought to be airborne but transmitted through skin-to-skin contact.

For those who do develop symptoms, SFDPH says it's key to reach out to a medical professional.

Monkeypox vaccines are in short supply nationwide, and getting an appointment to get one can be difficult.

"We want to know people who have been directly in contact with somebody, in order to vaccinate them," Strona said.

Comfort and Joy says they value the health and safety of all of their customers.

RELATED: US in process of releasing monkeypox vaccine from national stockpile for 'high-risk' people: CDC

And while that guided their decision to inform all of those who might have been exposed, they also warn it's important not to let false information stereotype any group.

"There's nothing about queer people that predisposes us to contracting or transmitting this disease," said Stanley.

And although monkeypox cases have risen globally in recent months, infectious disease experts say there's no need for panic.

"I think what we're going to see is a lot more cases in the next few weeks, but it's still not going to be a big risk to the general population at this moment," said infectious disease expert, Dr. Peter Chin-Hong.

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