About Monkeypox

  • Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus, which is in the same family of viruses as the virus that causes smallpox.
  • Symptoms of monkeypox can include:
    • Fever
    • Headache
    • Muscle aches and backache
    • Swollen lymph nodes
    • Chills
    • Exhaustion
    • Respiratory symptoms (e.g. sore throat, nasal congestion, cough)
    • A rash that may be located on or near the genitals (penis, testicles, labia, and vagina) or anus but could also be on other areas like the hands, feet, chest, face, or mouth.
      • The rash will go through several stages, including scabs, before healing.
      • The rash can look like pimples or blisters and may be painful or itchy.
  • Monkeypox symptoms usually start within 3 weeks of exposure to the virus. If someone has flu-like symptoms, they will usually develop a rash 1-4 days later.

Monkeypox Transmission

  • Monkeypox can spread to anyone through close, personal, often skin-to-skin contact, including:
    • Direct contact with monkeypox rash, scabs, or body fluids from a person with monkeypox.
    • Touching objects, fabrics (clothing, bedding, or towels), and surfaces that have been used by someone with monkeypox.
    • Contact with respiratory secretions.
    • A pregnant person can spread the virus to their unborn child.
    • It’s also possible for people to get monkeypox from infected animals, either by being scratched or bitten by the animal or by preparing or eating meat or using products from an infected animal.
  • A person with monkeypox can spread it to others from the time symptoms start until the rash has fully healed and a fresh layer of skin has formed. The illness typically lasts 2-4 weeks.

Monkeypox Prevention and Protection

  • Direct skin-to-skin contact, including sexual and/or close intimate contact, has been identified as a predominant type of exposure for persons with monkeypox in the United States.
  • Everyone should take steps to protect themselves from monkeypox infection.
  • Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like monkeypox.
  • Do not touch the rash or scabs of a person with monkeypox.
  • Do not kiss, hug, cuddle, or have close personal contact with someone with monkeypox.
  • Do not share eating utensils or cups with a person with monkeypox.
  • Do not handle or touch the bedding, towels, or clothing of a person with monkeypox.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer

If you have a new or unexplained rash or other symptoms of monkeypox, contact your healthcare provider. If you don’t have insurance or a healthcare provider, contact your local nearby health department. When you see a healthcare provider, wear a mask, and remind them that this virus is circulating in the area.

About the Monkeypox Vaccine:

  • JYNNEOS™ is a vaccine for prevention of smallpox and monkeypox disease and is given in a two-dose series, administered 28 days apart.
  • The immune response takes 14 days after the second dose for maximal development.
  • Adverse reactions to the vaccine include injection site reactions such as pain, swelling, and redness. Fatigue, headache, and muscle pain were most common systemic reactions observed in a clinical trial.
  • Click here for additional information about JYNNEOS™
  • Due to limited vaccine availability, the Southeast Health District is presently offering the monkeypox vaccine by appointment only.

To schedule an appointment to receive a monkeypox vaccine, please visit or call 1-855-473-4374.
We are available from 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM, Monday through Thursday,
and 7:30 AM to 5:00 PM on Fridays.

More Information

Much more information about monkeypox, how it spreads, how to prevent infections, signs and symptoms, and more, visit

Monkeypox Home Isolation Guidance
Monkeypox Home Isolation Guidance – Spanish
Monkeypox Safer Sex Information Sheet
Monkeypox Stigma

For Providers:

Georgia DPH Letter to Providers – Monkeypox
Commercial Testing Guidance for Georgia Providers