Monkeypox Public Health Advisory
OFFICE HOURS: Monday – Thursday: 8:00am to 5:00pm • Friday: 8:00am to 3:00pm
AFTER-HOURS CRISIS SUPPORT & VICTIM ASSISTANCE: 303-615-9911
Monkeypox Public Health Advisory
In August, 60 new cases of monkeypox were reported across Colorado, bringing the state’s current total to 134 confirmed cases.
While no monkeypox cases have been reported on campus, the Health Center at Auraria encourages all members of the campus community to be aware of the following helpful safety and awareness information.
The Health Center at Auraria is now offering the JYNNEOS monkeypox vaccine to eligible students, faculty and staff on the Auraria Campus at no cost.
Due to a nationwide shortage of JYNNEOS vaccine, only eligible individuals may be vaccinated against monkeypox at this time.
Those eligible for immunization include:
- Anyone who has had close physical contact with someone who been diagnosed with monkeypox in the last 14 days.
- Anyone who:
- Has had multiple sexual partners in the last 14 days
- Has had sexual partners they did not previously know in the last 14 days
- Has had close physical contact with other people in a venue where anonymous or group sex may occur in the last 14 days
- Was diagnosed with gonorrhea or syphilis in the past three months
- Already uses or is eligible for HIV PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis), medication to prevent HIV infection (e.g., Truvada, Descovy or Apretude)
- Engages in commercial and/or transactional sex (e.g., sex in exchange for money, shelter, food, and other goods or needs).
CDPHE (Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment) will continue to revisit criteria for monkeypox vaccination; eligibility may continue to change as supply from the federal government increases.
Individuals who are interested in being vaccinated against monkeypox and fall into one of the above categories may complete the Monkeypox Eligibility Questionnaire.
Once your eligibility questionnaire is complete, a member of the immunization team at The Health Center at Auraria will reach out to you to schedule an appointment. Please allow 24 business hours to receive this call.
What is monkeypox?
According to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Monkeypox is a virus in the orthopox family of viruses. Monkeypox is rare, but it can be serious for people who get sick.
Early symptoms can include fever, headache, muscle aches, swollen lymph nodes and exhaustion. Most people get a rash or skin bumps one to three days after they first start feeling sick. This rash usually starts on the face and then spreads to the arms and legs. Sometimes, the rash may start in the genital area. Some people don’t feel any symptoms before they get a rash. Monkeypox can look like syphilis, herpes, blisters or even acne.
How does monkeypox spread?
Per the CDPHE, monkeypox can spread to anyone, through close, personal, often skin-to-skin contact.” Close contact can mean physical contact with a sick person’s sores, bumps or lesions, including, but not limited tosexual contact. Monkeypox can also spread through touching the bed linens or clothing of someone who is sick. Monkeypox can also live on other surfaces for some time.
Who should get tested for monkeypox?
The CDPHE recommends monkeypox testing for people who have a new rash, lesions, or sores with pus and could have had close contact with someone who was infected.
If there is a potential monkeypox case on campus, what is the procedure in terms of testing and notification?
As of July 26, five commercial labs have gained approval for labs including Quest Diagnostics. The Health Center at Auraria uses Quest Diagnostics, and the center has testing swabs. HCA will take samples of 1-2 lesions of suspected monkeypox. The patient is then advised to isolate from others (avoid skin-to-skin contact); not share any linens, clothes or towels; and wash their hands frequently to reduce the chance of spreading it to others.
If the lesion(s) are positive for monkeypox, then the state epidemiologists will take over. There can be treatment, but it is usually a self-limited disease with the symptoms lasting 2-4 weeks.
Members of the campus community who have specific questions or concerns can seek information and equitable, inclusive health services through the Health Center at Auraria. Anyone who is experiencing fear, anxiety and stigma related to the monkeypox virus can contact their respective institution’s Counseling Center or the LGBTQ Student Resource Center.
To learn more about monkeypox please visit the CDPHE website and their sub-pages that provide information on Frequently Asked Questions, Signs and Symptoms , Vaccines and an up-to-date List of Testing Sites.