FL closing in on 400 monkeypox cases, mostly in large urban enclaves

Nationwide, monkeypox in 46 states and D.C., with nearly 5,000 cases

By: - July 29, 2022 3:52 pm

Monkeypox virus. Credit: CDC.

Florida is closing in on 400 monkeypox cases as of Friday, with the largest number of cases in South Florida and other urban settings.

Data from the Florida Department of Health show monkeypox cases in 17 counties — roughly a quarter of the 67 counties in Florida.

But those counties represent the largest population areas in the state, from Miami-Dade, at about 2.9 million, and Broward County, with about 1.9 million people.

Three other counties — Hillsborough, Palm Beach and Orange counties — each have about 1.5 million people, according to 2022 population statistics from the state health department.

Those counties usually have the largest numbers of monkeypox cases, with one exception: Monroe County, home of the Keys, with about 78,000 people.

Elsewhere, it would be unusual to see any monkeypox cases in the swath of North Florida, the data show.

Here’s the most recent list of 374 monkeypox cases in Florida, according to the state health department:

County Monkeypox cases
Broward 184
Miami-Dade 96
Orange 22
Palm Beach 18
Pinellas 16
Monroe 11
Hillsborough 8
Duval 4
Polk 3
Collier 2
Lake 2
Lee 2
Seminole 2
Flagler 1
Osceola 1
Santa Rosa 1
Sarasota 1

Meanwhile, nationwide, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports 4,907 monkeypox cases, with the largest number of cases in New York, California, Illinois, Florida and Georgia. (Keep in mind that Florida’s health department figure has a higher number of cases compared to the CDC’s Florida figure.)

Overall, monkeypox cases are in 46 states and the District of Columbia. Only Alaska, Montana, Wyoming and Vermont do not have monkeypox cases.

Here’s the list of cases as of Friday, according to the CDC:

State Cases
New York 1247
California 799
Illinois 396
Florida 346
Georgia 330
Texas 315
District of Columbia 214
Pennsylvania 124
Massachusetts 117
Maryland 111
New Jersey 110
Washington 108
Virginia 76
Oregon 58
Colorado 53
Arizona 50
North Carolina 46
Indiana 45
Louisiana 31
Minnesota 30
Connecticut 28
Michigan 28
Utah 27
Tennessee 24
Ohio 20
Rhode Island 19
Alabama 17
Nevada 14
South Carolina 14
Wisconsin 13
Hawaii 10
Iowa 10
Puerto Rico 10
Nebraska 9
Oklahoma 9
Missouri 8
New Hampshire 7
New Mexico 7
Kentucky 6
Arkansas 4
Delaware 3
Idaho 3
West Virginia 3
Non-US Resident 3
Kansas 1
Maine 1
Mississippi 1
North Dakota 1
South Dakota 1

Overall, the United States has the highest number of monkeypox cases of 78 countries in the world, according to CDC global data.

The Phoenix and the nonprofit States Newsroom network recently reported that:

“No Americans have died so far from the virus that can include chills, exhaustion, fever, headache, muscle aches and swollen lymph nodes. Monkeypox often also comes with a rash that can look like pimples or blisters, according to the CDC.  The World Health Organization has reported at least five deaths globally — three in Nigeria and two in Central African Republic, WHO data show.

“The virus is spread through direct physical contact with someone who has the rash or lesions on their body as well as through respiratory droplets during prolonged, close contact, or contact with items like bedding or towels that someone with the rash has used.

“The current outbreak of monkeypox in the United States, Europe and other countries that don’t traditionally experience the virus, is predominantly occurring in gay or bisexual people, or men who have sex with men, according to public health officials. However, others can become infected with monkeypox if they have been in close contact with someone who has the virus.”

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Diane Rado
Diane Rado

Diane Rado has covered state and local government and public schools in six states over some 30 years, focusing on policy and investigative stories as well as legislative and political reporting. She spent most of her career at the St. Petersburg (Tampa Bay) Times and the Chicago Tribune. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and did a fellowship in education reform at the University of Michigan in 1999-2000. She is married to a journalist and has three adult children.