First case of pediatric monkeypox confirmed in Washington

The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) has confirmed the state's first case of monkeypox in a patient under the age of 18. 

According to the DOH, a 17-year-old tested positive for the virus. The DOH has not released the location of the positive case due to privacy reasons. 

Monkeypox cases are continuing to rise in the state of Washington. So far, all cases have been reported in those 18 and older. 

As of Aug. 18, there have been 333 cases reported to the DOH.  


Colleges, schools discussing monkeypox precautions before school year starts

As summer comes to an end, the concern now is a continued spread of monkeypox as students are getting ready to go back to school.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said the expanding monkeypox outbreak in more than 70 countries is an "extraordinary" situation that now qualifies as a global emergency, a declaration that could spur further investment in treating the once-rare disease and worsen the scramble for scarce vaccines.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus made the decision to issue the declaration despite a lack of consensus among members of WHO's emergency committee. It was the first time the chief of the U.N. health agency has taken such an action.

Gov. Jay Inslee has also issued a directive to the DOH that outlines additional steps to address the rise in monkeypox cases.

The directive asked the Department of Health to take actions including conducting comprehensive public outreach and education within appropriate communities and communities disproportionately impacted by the virus; prioritizing equitable distribution of existing treatments — including the limited supply of approved vaccine — and to monitor case counts and demographic data, among other measures.