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Mpox, formerly known as Monkeypox, is a disease caused by infection with the mpox virus. The mpox virus is part of the same family of viruses as smallpox. Mpox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms, but milder and mpox is rarely fatal. Mpox is not related to chickenpox.

Symptoms of Mpox

Symptoms may include:

  • Rashes, bumps, or blisters on or around the genitals or in other areas like your hands, feet, chest, or face. View examples of mpox rashes here.
  • Flu-like symptoms, such as fever, headache, muscle aches, chills, and fatigue. These symptoms may occur before or after the rash appears, or not at all.
  • Significant pain is commonly associated with the rash and lesions.  Pain may interfere with eating, urination, and defecation.

What to Do if You Have Mpox Symptoms

  • Call your medical care provider for testing and treatment if test positive for mpox, or
  • Visit the ECDOH Sexual Health Center located at the Jesse Nash Health Center, 608 William St, Buffalo, NY 14206, Monday – Friday, 8:00am – 3:30pm. No appointment needed for mpox testing or immunization.  If you have additional questions regarding mpox testing please call the ECDOH Sexual Health Center at 716-858-7687.
  • Call 716-898-4119 if you have tested positive for mpox and wish to be screened for potential treatment with TPOXX (Tecovirimat).

How mpox spreads

How Mpox is Spread

Mpox can be spread through:

  • Direct contact with mpox sores or rashes on an individual who has mpox
  • Respiratory droplets or oral fluids from someone with mpox, particularly for those who have close contact with someone or are around them for a long period of time
  • Contact with objects or fabrics (e.g., clothing, bedding, towels) that have been used by someone with mpox.

How to Prevent Mpox

Prevention of mpox includes:

  • Get vaccinated for mpox.
  • Talk with your sexual partners about whether they have a rash or other symptoms consistent with mpox or other STIs, and if so, seek testing and treatment.
  • Avoid skin-to-skin contact with someone who has a rash or other mpox-related symptoms.
  • If you are exposed to mpox or experience symptoms, make sure to reach out to a healthcare provider.
  • Follow reputable sources of health information, including NYSDOH, CDC, and your local county health department.

Mpox Vaccine

  • JYNNEOS (also known as Imvamune or Imvanex) is a vaccine licensed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to prevent mpox and can be used before and after exposure to mpox.
  • JYNNEOS is given in a 2 dose series.  Your 2nd dose of vaccine is due 28 days after your 1st dose.  Individuals are considered to be fully vaccinated about 2 weeks after their 2nd dose of JYNNEOS.
  • If the vaccine is given before exposure or within 4 days of exposure, this vaccine may reduce severity of symptoms.

Vaccination Recommendations

Vaccine is recommended for persons who:

  • Have a known or suspected exposure to someone with mpox.
  • Have a sex partner in the previous two weeks who was diagnosed with mpox.
  • Identify as part of a community disproportionately affected by sexually transmitted infections (STIs)* and who in the last six months have had either:
    • A new diagnosis of one or more STIs.
    • More than one sex partner.
  • Have had any of the following in the past six months:
    • Sex at a commercial event sex venue (e.g. sex club or bathhouse) or sex party.
    • Sex related to a large commercial event or in a geographic area (e.g., city or county) where mpox transmission is occurring.
    • Engage in transactional sex.
  • Have a sex partner with any of the above risks.
  • Anticipate experiencing any of the above scenarios.
  • Persons living with HIV or other causes of immune suppression who had recent or anticipate future risk of mpox. exposure from any of the above scenarios.
  • Work in settings where they may be exposed to mpox:
    • Those who work with orthopoxvirus in a laboratory.
    • Those who are part of an orthopoxvirus health care worker response team.

*While mpox can affect anyone, the majority of mpox transmission in NYS has been documented among individuals who report male-male sexual contact, including gay, bisexual, and other MSM; as well as transgender, non-binary and other gender-diverse individuals, and those in their sexual networks.

Where to Get Mpox Vaccine

Erie County Department of Health Sexual Health Center  
Jesse Nash Health Center 
608 William Street 
Buffalo, NY 14206 
Monday – Friday, 8:00am – 3:30pm 
No appointment needed.

Treatment for Mpox

Persons who have tested positive for mpox and wish to be screened for potential treatment with TPOXX (Tecovirimat) need to call 716-898-4119.

Reporting Mpox

Medical providers must immediately report a suspected or confirmed case of mpox to the local health department where the patient resides.  For Erie County residents, report to the ECDOH, Office of Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance by calling (716) 858-7697, Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 4:30pm. 

Contact of a  Mpox Case

Contacts of a suspected or confirmed mpox case should call the ECDOH Sexual Health Center at (716) 858-7687 to discuss vaccination and possible testing.

Contacts of a suspected or confirmed mpox case should be prioritized for receipt of their first dose as soon as possible.  If given within 4 days of exposure, the vaccine may reduce the likelihood of infection, and with 14 days may reduce severity of symptoms.

More Information and Resources 

For the Public

For Healthcare Providers