** Watch the Ohio Department of Health’s Aug. 11, 2022, briefing on monkeypox and COVID-19 in the player above.
(WJW) – The Ohio Department of Health on Thursday launched a new dashboard to help track the outbreak. It will be updated every Thursday, according to a news release from the department.
It shows that Cuyahoga County has the most cases of monkeypox among the 19 Ohio counties with reported cases — more than twice as many as Franklin County, which has the second most.
There were 69 cases reported in Cuyahoga County Thursday; 5 each in Lorain and Summit; 4 in Lake; and 1 case each in Medina, Portage and Stark and Mahoning counties, according to the dashboard. Franklin County, whose seat is the city of Columbus, has 33 cases.
No cases have been reported in Trumbull or Columbiana counties.
Currently, the state has 147 cases among residents ages 19 to 64, data shows. 9 people have been hospitalized, and there have been no deaths.
The vast majority of cases, nearly 97%, are among men.
Similar to most of the about 15,000 cases reported nationwide as of Tuesday, the majority of the local cases are among men who have sex with other men, or who identify as gay or bisexual, Roderick Harris, Cuyahoga County health commissioner, said during a Wednesday media briefing.
Though monkeypox is not a sexually transmitted disease, it can be spread by skin-to-skin contact during sexual encounters, Harris said.
“The Ohio Department of Health has been working closely with our local health department partners and healthcare providers to provide monkeypox testing, case investigation, contact tracing and prevention and treatment options,” said Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff, ODH medical director.
“As cases do continue to rise, we want to keep Ohioans informed about this outbreak, and what steps they should take to protect themselves,” he said. “The risk of contracting monkeypox for most Ohioans remains low, as this virus does not easily spread like COVID-19. However, it is important to continue to do all we can to mitigate the spread of this virus and to reduce the burden of illness.”
Here’s a list of frequently asked questions about the virus on the state health department’s website.
Where to get the vaccine
200 doses of the monkeypox vaccine clinic were given Tuesday at the board of health offices, 5500 Venture Drive, Parma. Another clinic is set for this Friday, Aug. 26, from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Residents can register online, but it’s not required.
More county-run clinics will be set for next Tuesday and Friday, Harris said.
MetroHealth on Thursday announced its own vaccination clinic for patients and non-patients, set for 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday in the Rammelkamp Atrium, 2500 MetroHealth Drive, Cleveland. Drivers are encouraged to park in any visitor lot and then enter through the main Towers entrance. To make an appointment, call 440-592-6843 and select option three.
All the vaccination clinics are free.
Anyone who is at high risk for monkeypox is likely to have been recently exposed or who has or expects to have prolonged intimate contact that puts them at high risk for exposure is encouraged to get vaccinated.
Patty Coller contributed to this report.