Monkeypox: First Confirmed Pediatric Case in Florida
Pediatricians recommend that parents be careful because the most common way to spread monkeypox is by having contact with someone at home.
The Florida Department of Health confirmed that a 4-year-old boy in Martin County, Florida has tested positive for monkeypox, making it the first pediatric case in the state since the outbreak in June.
The number of monkeypox cases in Florida continues to rise, and while the health department says the threat to the general population remains low, some local doctors say a lack of testing and vaccinations is making the outbreak worse.
To date, there are at least six other reported pediatric cases of monkeypox in the United States including in California, Indiana, Maine, and Washington DC.
“This exponential growth continues and will continue as long as we have shortages of testing and vaccine supplies,” said Dr. Aftab Khan, a local internal medicine specialist.
Availability of monkeypox vaccines
The monkeypox specialist of the World Health Organization (WHO), Rosamund Lewis, warned this Wednesday at a press conference that the vaccine against this disease “is not a panacea” and that “it will not solve everything”.
“We have no information on the efficiency or efficacy of the vaccine. We have a few studies from the 1980s, when it was said that chickenpox vaccines could protect up to 80 percent from monkeypox. But this is all the information we have,” he assured.
The Center in Orlando said it will offer vaccinations by appointment only at its location at 1200 Hillcrest St. Suite 10g2 this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
For his part, the director general of the United Nations health agency, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, regrets that, at the moment, vaccine supplies and data on their effectiveness are “limited”, although he has acknowledged that they are beginning to receive data from some countries.
While cases in young children make up a very small percentage of overall cases , doctors and pediatricians say parents still need to be careful because the most common way a child can get the disease is if someone else in their household gives positive.
“It can be much more serious in children. They can end up with more serious infections. They can end up with pneumonia. They can end up with encephalitis. Also, it can be transmitted from mother to fetus,” pediatrician Dr. Mateo Seibel said.