By Michael Hernandez
WASHINGTON (AA) - The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified nine monkeypox cases in seven states, according to multiple reports published on Thursday.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky announced the new totals during a briefing with reporters, noting that all cases so far found were detected by local laboratories, according to the Hill news outlet. They have been identified in California, Florida, Massachusetts, New York, Utah, Virginia and Washington.
All of the cases were detected among "gay, bisexual men and other men who have sex with men," she said, according to CNN. But the CDC director emphasized that risk of infection is not limited to any one group of people, and stressed that the health response should be "guided by science, not by stigma."
“Stigma and discrimination in public health results in decreased access to care, ongoing disease transmission and a blunted response to outbreaks and threats,” Walensky said, according to CNN. “So I urge everyone to approach this outbreak without stigma and without discrimination.”
There are currently two vaccines in the US stockpile, as well as two antiviral treatments for monkeypox, she said. The vaccine Jynneos has already been sent to states with identified cases.