Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox is part of the same family of viruses that cause smallpox. Monkeypox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms, but milder, and monkeypox is rarely fatal. Monkeypox might start with symptoms like the flu, with fever, low energy, swollen lymph nodes, and general body aches. Within 1 to 3 days (sometimes longer) after the appearance of fever, the person can develop a rash or sores.
How does Monkeypox spread?
Monkeypox spreads primarily through direct contact with infectious sores, scabs, or body fluids, including during sex, as well as activities like kissing, hugging, massaging, and cuddling. Monkeypox can spread through touching materials used by a person with monkeypox that haven’t been cleaned, such as clothing and bedding. It can also spread by respiratory secretions during prolonged, close, face-to-face contact. Monkeypox is not spread through casual brief conversations or walking by someone with monkeypox.
Signs and symptoms
What to do if you have had an exposure or symptoms
If you have had an exposure, have symptoms you are concerned about, or need to speak with someone about your risk, please reach out to your primary care provider. Most providers can now do testing for monkeypox through commercial laboratories.
Students can schedule appointments with their Student Health Center providers Monday - Friday through their Student Health Portal or speak with someone after-hours and weekends by calling the 24/7 Nurse Advice Line. Student Health Center providers and staff have been trained in identifying monkeypox, and the laboratory is prepared to collect and send samples for testing.
There are plans for isolation spaces for students living on campus who contract monkeypox and need to self-isolate until the infectious period has passed.
Vaccination helps to protect against monkeypox when given before or shortly after an exposure. The vaccine is administered in a two-dose series.
How can I get vaccinated?
With direction of these updated guidelines from the state, as of Dec 1st, 2022 the UCI Student Health Center will be offering monkeypox vaccine (JYNNEOS) to UCI students. Please click visit https://osh.chs.uci.edu and follow directions to scheduling, and contact our Student Health Center 949-824-5304 with any additional questions or concerns you may have.
The JYNNEOS monkeypox vaccine is also currently available from the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA).
OCHCA is providing 1st and 2nd doses of Jynneos vaccine (for Mpox) as follows:
- Monday through Friday through OCHCA Public Health Services Family Health Clinic
- Time: 8:00am to 11:30am and 1:00pm to 4:00pm
- By appointment only at 1725 W. 17th Street, Santa Ana, CA 92706
To schedule an appointment please call 1-800-914-4887 or you can also look for available appointments on Myturn.ca.gov
For the most current information, visit the OCHCA website.
We understand that news of a new infectious disease on top of the last few years of the COVID-19 pandemic can be concerning and result in feelings of anxiety and uncertainty. Campus mental health resources are available through the Counseling Center and the Student Health Center. Faculty and staff may seek support through the Employee Assistance Program.
UCI continues to work closely with the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA) to keep the campus prepared, informed, and healthy.