What’s the difference between monkeypox and COVID-19? Florida health expert explains

Dr. Todd Husty says monkeypox spreads via close contact

Seminole County medical director Dr. Todd Husty explained on Monday what most of us are asking: What is monkeypox?

SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. – Seminole County medical director Dr. Todd Husty explained on Monday what most of us are asking: What is monkeypox?

It comes after health officials in South Florida reported a presumptive case in Broward County Sunday, adding that the case is related to international travel and the patient is in isolation.

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“Monkeypox is not a respiratory virus. It’s a virus that you get by close contact with other people,” Husty said.

Health leaders said monkeypox is an infection transmitted between animals and humans with most cases reported in Central and West Africa.

“It’s been in Africa for a while, but two things are happening. One is we are much more mobile than we used to be. People will go from Africa, to Europe, to the United States and around. So, therefore spreading communicable disease is much easier than it used to be and it happens more readily,” Husty said.

Symptoms to look out for include fever, headache, muscle and backaches, swollen lymph nodes, chills and exhaustion.

Health officials, however, stress monkeypox does not spread as easily as COVID-19 and is rarely fatal.

“This is nothing like COVID because COVID spreads (through the air) and this spreads by close contact. Touching people, touching their bodily fluids, that kind of stuff. Remember: with COVID we were worried about exponential growth. This thing will not have exponential growth,” Husty said.


About the Author:

Ezzy Castro is a multimedia journalist on News 6's morning team who has a passion for telling the stories of the people in the Central Florida community. Ezzy worked at WFOR CBS4 in South Florida and KBMT in Beaumont, Texas, where she covered Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Being from Miami, Ezzy loves Cuban coffee and croquetas!