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CPS board weighs monkeypox risk: 'There are a couple of things we don't know'

Mche Lee

The monkeypox risk to children is still unclear. The interim director of the Cincinnati Health Department says there's no official guidance from the CDC or the Ohio Department of Health, as a new school year draws near.

Dr. Grant Mussman talked with Cincinnati Public School board members Monday afternoon.

“A couple of things that we still don’t know very well, and one is to what extent children are at risk of severe disease,” he says. “In some previous outbreaks, children under eight were at some higher risk.”

Mussman says it doesn't look like schools will be a risky point of transmission.

“Direct skin-to-skin contact including close, intimate contact or sexual contact has been identified as the predominate type of exposure for persons who go on to develop monkeypox," he says. "Of the few children who developed monkeypox, (it) appeared to be household contact.”

He says the few cases among kids were transmitted through contact with household items.

“Generally the advice is that children with fever and rash should be treated according to the way you would treat it currently,” he says. “The same disinfectants which are used for COVID should be effective against monkeypox. Any adult should just maintain awareness of their health status and seek care if they suspect they have monkeypox.”

Mussman says there are 89 cases of monkeypox in Ohio, and five cases in Cincinnati.

CPS students return to classrooms Thursday.

Bill Rinehart started his radio career as a disc jockey in 1990. In 1994, he made the jump into journalism and has been reporting and delivering news on the radio ever since.