Mpox (formerly known as monkeypox)

Note: Consistent with the World Health Organization’s November 28, 2022 announcement, Public Health Ontario will now refer to human monkeypox disease as mpox. The virus that causes mpox will still be called “monkeypox virus” while the International Committee on the Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV) continues its process for reconsidering the naming conventions for all orthopoxvirus species. In addition, consistent with the August 2022 announcement from WHO, PHO will replace references to the monkeypox virus Central African/Congo Basin clade as Clade I and the West African clade with Clade II. Public Health Ontario laboratory tests for monkeypox virus will continue to be referred to as monkeypox tests and health care providers and others who submit a sample for testing, should request a monkeypox test.

Mpox is a viral illness that causes a rash or lesions on a person’s body that can be in a single location (e.g., genital area, mouth) or all over the body. Other symptoms that can happen before or after the rash include fever/chills, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, headache, muscle aches, and sore throat. During the 2022 global outbreak, mpox virus has most commonly spread to people through direct close contact with an infected person including intimate or sexual contact.

If you are a healthcare provider looking for current Monkeypox guidance, including case and contact management, and vaccine and antiviral guidance, please visit the Ministry of Health’s Monkeypox Virus webpage.

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Updated 15 Dec 2023