• Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. This virus is in the same family of viruses as smallpox.
  • Symptoms are similar to smallpox, but less severe. They begin with flu-like symptoms like fever, headache, muscle aches, and swollen lymph nodes. A rash that can look like pimples or blisters may appear on the face, inside the mouth, and on other parts of the body. It is rarely fatal. Most people recover in two to four weeks.
  • It usually spreads through close contact with someone infected with monkeypox through lesions, body fluids, or respiratory droplets.
  • Monkeypox is not a new disease and there is an approved vaccine, although not recommended to be administered widespread at this time.


  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working with state health departments to monitor all cases of monkeypox in the United States.
  • There are confirmed cases in 25 states and the District of Columbia. A map of case counts across the United States can be viewed here.


  • There are six confirmed cases of monkeypox in Colorado. Case numbers are updated on the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) website here.
  • There are no confirmed cases in Mesa County.
  • Mesa County Public Health works collaboratively with local health systems to identify and limit the spread of infectious diseases. If cases are detected in Mesa County, trained teams will identify people who could have been exposed and coordinate post-exposure vaccination.
  • Colorado has the ability to administer post-exposure vaccinations to help prevent the spread of monkeypox. Any local residents who are exposed will be offered the vaccine as a prevention method.
  • Mesa County Public Health will notify the community when we have confirmed cases.


  • Although there are no confirmed cases in Mesa County it is important to understand what to do if you feel like you were exposed to monkeypox or if you think you have symptoms.
  • Monkeypox can look like syphilis, herpes, blisters, or acne. If you have a new rash or bumps, have it checked out by a medical provider.
  • Anyone with a rash that looks like monkeypox should talk to their healthcare provider, even if they don’t think they had contact with someone who has monkeypox.