No confirmed cases of monkeypox in Suffolk as cases across England rise

There have been no confirmed cases in Suffolk 

Symptoms of monkeypox include a rash (file photo) - Credit: PA

There has been no confirmed cases of monkeypox in Suffolk, public health experts have confirmed. 

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) detected an additional 36 cases of monkeypox in England on Monday, bringing the total number to 56 – but no reported cases in Suffolk. 

A Suffolk public health spokesman confirmed that as of today, there are no confirmed cases of monkeypox in the county.

Monkeypox can be spread through touching clothing, bedding or towels used by someone with the monkeypox rash, touching monkeypox skin blisters or scabs and through the coughs and sneezes of a person with the monkeypox rash. 

The symptoms of monkeypox include fever, headaches, swellings, back pain and aching muscles. 

A rash can sometimes appear between one to five days after the first symptoms. 

The rash often begins on the face, then spreads to other parts of the body. 

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Dr Susan Hopkins, chief medical adviser, UKHSA, said: “Because the virus spreads through close contact, we are urging everyone to be aware of any unusual rashes or lesions and to contact a sexual health service if they have any symptoms.  

“A notable proportion of recent cases in the UK and Europe have been found in gay and bisexual men so we are particularly encouraging these men to be alert to the symptoms.”

UKHSA health protection teams are contacting people considered to be high risk contacts of confirmed cases and are advising those who have been risk assessed and remain well to isolate at home for up to 21 days. 

In addition, UKHSA has purchased supplies of a safe smallpox vaccine and this is being offered to identified close contacts of someone diagnosed with monkeypox to reduce the risk of symptomatic infection and severe illness.

Anyone with unusual rashes or lesions on any part of their body, especially their genitalia, should immediately contact NHS 111 or their local sexual health service.