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The monkeypox outbreak is now in more than 70 countries and the World Health Organization Saturday declared it a global emergency.
Connecticut has 54 cases, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and there were 10,392 case confirmed nationwide as of Wednesday, August 10, the agency reported.
A global emergency is WHO’s highest level of alert but the designation does not necessarily mean a disease is particularly transmissible or lethal. Similar declarations were made for the Zika virus in 2016 in Latin America and the ongoing effort to eradicate polio, in addition to the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
Monkeypox is a viral disease that occurs mostly in central and western Africa. It got its name because it was first identified in laboratory monkeys in the early 1950s. The first human case of monkeypox was recorded in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo during a period of intensified effort to eliminate smallpox.
The Connecticut Department of Public Health announced the first case of monkeypox in a Connecticut on July 5 and officials said the risk to the public was low.
The map below shows the number of cases in each state, per the CDC.