FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- As cases of monkeypox continue to rise across the state, Fresno County health officials say they're ready to fight the virus that could leave a patient with painful lesions throughout the body, after confirming one case earlier this week.
"Although it may be politically incorrect, in order to protect the community, people need to know men who have sex with men that are having multiple partners are at the greatest risk," says the county's interim health officer, Dr. Rais Vohra.
But it's really important to note that while early cases have spread in the LGBTQ community, monkeypox can infect anyone regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.
Fresno County says they have received 20 doses of a two-step vaccine and can call on the state if more is needed.
Anyone with a known exposure within 14 days should contact their healthcare provider or county health department regarding testing and vaccine eligibility.
"There is some indication in the month of August we should see increased supply coming into the State of California and thus Fresno County, so stay close to our monkeypox website if any member of our community is interested," says the county's assistant director, Joe Prado.
Health experts say monkeypox might start with symptoms similar to the flu - fever, low energy and body aches. What sets it apart is a wave of sores and rashes.
They say monkeypox spreads primarily through direct contact with infectious sores, scabs, or body fluids.
Any intimate contact can transmit the rare virus, but officials stress this is not a sexually transmitted infection.
"It's very few tiny lesions either in the genital area or in the mouth or face and that lesion stays for about two weeks and crusts and falls off where a new skin comes on top. During this period, they can give the infection to folks they come in close contact with that lesion," says Naiel N. Nassar with UCSF Fresno.
Once the lesions heal over, a patient is not believed to be contagious.
Health officials say the best way to protect yourself from monkeypox are the basic precautions - hand washing, face masks and self-isolation.