On Friday, August 26th, the Maryland Department of Health (MDH) released its human monkeypox data dashboard featuring critical case and vaccination information.
MDH Secretary Dennis R. Schrader described the purpose of the Dashboard in a press release:
‘This tool will further help health care providers deliver the care that is needed to Marylanders affected by human monkeypox,’ said Secretary Schrader. ‘The dashboard also builds on the information about human monkeypox that the state has been providing to help residents stay healthy and safe.’
The Dashboard will be updated every Friday and include the following information:
- Total confirmed cases in the state
- Confirmed cases by jurisdiction
- Confirmed cases by age, sex, race, and ethnicity
- Number of people vaccinated statewide
According to the Dashboard, most monkeypox cases, 461 in total, are concentrated in Baltimore City (28.9%) and Prince George’s County (38%). Demographically, the average monkeypox patient is more likely to be male (95.2%), between the ages of 30 and 39 (47.5%), and Black (57.3%). MDH reported, “early data suggest that gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men make up a high number of cases. However, anyone who has been in close contact with someone who has monkeypox is at risk, regardless of gender or sexual orientation. ”
To date, 2,124 Marylanders have received the monkeypox vaccine. Per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, MDH is prioritizing the vaccine for the following individuals:
- Public Health Identified Close Contacts: Known close contacts who are identified by public health via case investigation, contact tracing, and risk exposure assessments.
- Occupational Exposure: Healthcare workers who may have been exposed to a known case and Laboratory Response Network (LRN) or other laboratory staff working directly with monkeypox testing.
Also, per CDC guidelines, several local health departments, including those for Baltimore City and Montgomery, Prince George’s, and Baltimore Counties, are offering the vaccine to the following individuals:
- Self-Identified Partners of Cases: Individuals who are aware that one of their sexual partners from the past two weeks has been diagnosed with monkeypox.
- Affected Community Members: Individuals in high-risk populations who report any of the following in the past two weeks:
- Recent group sex or sex with multiple partners.
- Sex or employment at a venue or in association with an event, venue, or defined geographic area where monkeypox transmission has been reported