Anyone can contract monkeypox but to date the vast majority of the cases have been in men who have sex with men, and the general population is currently at low risk of contracting the infection.
The CDC recommends vaccination for people who have been in close contact with people who have monkeypox. The current supply of the vaccine is limited, and so currently vaccination is prioritized for individuals at high risk. Eligibility for vaccination varies locally, but typically includes groups considered to be at high risk for monkeypox, including:
- People who have been in close physical contact with someone with monkeypox in the past two weeks
- People who have had multiple sexual partners in the past two weeks in an area with known monkeypox cases
- People whose jobs may expose them to monkeypox, including some healthcare or public health workers
The preferred vaccine to protect against monkeypox is Jynneos. There is a limited supply of Jynneos, but more is expected in the coming weeks and months. Guidelines may be expanded to others (at some, but lower risk) as vaccine supply increases). The alternative to Jynneos is the ACAM2000 vaccine, but it is not recommended for people with weakened immune systems and has the potential for more side effects. Contact your local health department for information about vaccine eligibility and testing.
Updated August 8, 2022