When students return to this autumn campus, the last covid variant is not the only virus they will have to worry. Monkeopox, a painful but not fatal virus that extends mainly through skin contact, is increasing, and with the autumn semester that is quickly approaching, many institutions are beginning to prepare for possible outbreaks.

There have been more than 6,600 confirmed cases of MonkeoPox in the US., According to the centers for disease control and prevention, more than half of which were reported in the last two weeks. Yesterday, the Biden administration declared that the virus was a national health emergency; California and Illinois declared emergency states last week, as did New York City.

Universities have not been immune to MonkeoPox even during the quiet summer months, when potentially high transmission places, such as bedrooms, gyms and conferences rooms: they are largely empty. Confirmed cases have been reported at the University of Texas in Austin; University of Georgetown and George Washington University in Washington, D.C.; and West Chester University and Bucknell University in Pennsylvania.

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Many experts encourage universities to start preparing for possible outbreaks, citing their densely populated residential environments and fluid social and sexual networks.

"There is definitely potential for universities to become a Fedro for infection," said Rachel Cox, an assistant nursing teacher who studies infectious diseases and epidemiology at the MGH Institute of Health Professions. "After two years of social isolation, students are likely interested in heavy socialization, and not only sexual activity, but also other types of close contact ... I think it would be prudent for universities to plan how to prevent outbreaks on campus and what to do if an outbreak occurs. " (This paragraph has been updated to correct the title and place of employment of COX).

Some institutions have begun to be the planning process seriously. David Lakey, Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and Medical Director of the University of Texas, said system officials have met with risk managers on several UT Campus to discuss preventive measures, messaging campaigns and containment strategies and strategies attention.

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"Universities are working through this at this time, without any formal guide of the CDC," he said. Higher education institutions. A spokesman for the American Health Association College de Colegio told Inside Higher ED that, although there are currently no official ACH The Campus.

Without panic. Planning

Two years of COVID security infrastructure development, including insulation housing, virus test sites and contact tracking, can help universities more effectively treat with cases of Monkeoypox in the campus.

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  • "We should prepare, learn and grow from Covid, take the lessons we learned and use them to protect others," Cox said.

    Lakey said that developing close connections with local and state health departments will be crucial to coordinate the tests, treatment and containment of Monkeopox in CAM

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