Department of Public Health tracking 200-plus contacts for patient

State health officials who are investigating the only confirmed monkeypox case in the U.S. are tracking more than 200 contacts of the Boston patient, the CDC said Monday.

The “vast majority” of the contacts of the Massachusetts man are health care workers, according to Jennifer McQuiston, deputy director of the the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of High Consequence Pathogens and Pathology. The patient was admitted last week to Massachusetts General Hospital and was isolated.

“The Massachusetts Department of (Public) Health is the entity that’s doing the primary work with the patient and doing the contact tracing investigation,” McQuiston said in response to a Herald question during a media briefing.

“(The DPH) have shared with us that they’ve been tracking over 200 contacts,” she added. “The vast majority of them are health care workers.”

There are also some personal contacts of the Massachusetts patient, McQuiston said.

The Bay State man, who recently traveled to Canada where a monkeypox cluster has been reported, remains the only confirmed monkeypox infection in the U.S.

There are now four orthopoxvirus cases across the country, which are considered suspected monkeypox cases. Orthopoxvirus is in the same family as the monkeypox virus.

New York health officials last week reported that a person tested positive for orthopoxvirus. CDC officials on Monday said Florida now has an orthopoxvirus case, and two have been reported in Utah.

“It’s likely that there are going to be additional cases reported in the United States,” McQuiston said.