Mpox virus (previously known as Monkeypox or MPV) infection can cause an illness that includes rashes and other symptoms. While cases of mpox are usually rare in the United States, in 2022 the United States and many other countries experienced a large outbreak of mpox.

Frequently Asked Questions  |  Data  |  2022 Outbreak

CDC Mpox Page

More information is available on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s mpox information page. Visit the CDC's Website

How it Spreads

Transmission of mpox requires close contact with someone who has mpox. Brief interactions that do not involve physical contact and health care interactions conducted using appropriate protective equipment are not high risk.

The mpox virus can be transmitted from person to person in the following ways:

  • Direct contact with the skin or body fluids of an infected person (including sexual/intimate contact)
  • Contact with virus-contaminated objects (such as bedding, clothing, fetish gear, or sex toys)
  • Respiratory droplets during direct and prolonged face-to-face contact
  • Spread to baby during pregnancy or spread to newborn during or after birth

People with a confirmed case of mpox are contagious starting four days before they develop symptoms and continue to be contagious until the scabs fall off the rash. A person with mpox should isolate from others until the scabs fall off.

Humans can also get mpox from contact with infected animals.


Mpox on hands
Mpox blister
Mpox on thumb
Mpox on shoulders

Mpox can cause a range of symptoms including fever, headache, or swollen lymph nodes, followed by a rash that can appear anywhere on the body. Some people may not have any symptoms before the start of the rash. Some people get a rash on the genitals or in the anal area. Some people start with having pain in the anal region, with or without other symptoms such as fever and headache.

For some people, the rash might only be on the genitals or anal region. For others, the rash might cover a larger area of the body. Over time, the rash will usually turn into raised bumps, which then fill with fluid. The rash eventually scabs over, and the scabs fall off.

Most people recover in 2-4 weeks, although the rash can leave scars. The disease can be serious, especially for immunocompromised people, children, and pregnant people.


To protect yourself and others from mpox, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) recommends the following measures:

  • Practicing safe sex and harm reduction methods such as reducing your number of sexual partners
  • Avoiding sexual contact with anyone who has open wounds, sores, or rashes
  • Avoiding other skin-to-skin contact with anyone who has open wounds, sores, or rashes, or anyone who is infected with mpox
  • Avoiding close contact with an animal that might have mpox, especially when traveling to areas where mpox is endemic
  • Avoiding touching objects, fabrics, and surfaces that have been used by someone with mpox and have not been disinfected
  • Washing hands frequently

A two-dose vaccine, JYNNEOS, is available to reduce the chance of developing an mpox infection. Mpox vaccination is only recommended for people who are at increased risk of infection. For more information on who is at risk visit our Mpox Frequently Asked Questions page.


For the Public

For Providers and Local Health Jurisdictions

Guidelines and Considerations

Storage and Handling


Vaccine Administration

Vaccine Information Statement



Additional Resources