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Mpox (monkeypox) is a rare viral disease spread through close personal contact, including skin-to-skin. It can cause a rash or sores, and flu-like illness. Infections have been increasingly reported in Mississippi and the U.S. Preventive vaccination is recommended for those at risk.

Vaccination Against Mpox


Persons 18 and older who meet any one of the following criteria are eligible for two-dose mpox vaccination:

  • People who have been notified by public health they are contacts to someone with mpox, or people who are aware of close, intimate or sexual contact with someone diagnosed with mpox
  • Gay, bisexual, other men who have sex with men, or transgender or nonbinary people who:
    • Have multiple or anonymous sex partners, or
    • Are living with HIV or receiving medication to prevention HIV infection (PrEP), or
    • Have been diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection (such as acute HIV, chancroid, chlamydia, gonorrhea or syphilis) in the prior 6 months
  • People who have had any of the following in the past 6 months:
    • Sex at a commercial sex venue, or
    • Sex in association with a large public event in a geographic area where mpox transmission is occurring
  • Sexual partners of people with the above risks
  • People who anticipate experiencing the above risks
  • People who are deemed at higher risk for mpox infection by their doctor, medical provider, or clinician.

If you think you are high risk based on this eligibility, don't wait – take action and get vaccinated now.

Where to Get Vaccinations

Mpox vaccinations are available from private medical providers as well as selected county health departments by appointment. See the list below for all vaccination providers and their contact information.

Free vaccinations from MSDH

Online: Schedule your appointment with our online Mpox Vaccine Scheduler: Get started

By phone: Call tMSDH at 855-767-0170 to determine your eligibility and to make an appointment for vaccination at a participating health department clinic.

How Mpox Is Spread

Mpox can spread to anyone through close, personal contact — including skin-to-skin contact such as:

  • Direct contact with mpox rash, sores or scabs
  • Contact with objects, fabrics (clothing, bedding, or towels), and surfaces that have been used by someone with mpox
  • Through respiratory droplets from face-to-face contact with a person who has mpox

Mpox does not spread easily without close contact.

This contact can happen during any intimate sexual contact:

  • Oral, anal, and vaginal sex
  • Hugging, massage, or touching any body part with mpox sores
  • Kissing and talking closely
  • Touching fabrics and objects used by a person with mpox, such as bedding, towels or surfaces that have come into contact with them

Transmission can occur by other types of contact:

  • Touching fabrics and objects used by a person with mpox, such as bedding, towels or surfaces that have come into contact with them

Many mpox cases have occurred among men who have sex with men, but anyone who comes into close contact with an infected person may be at risk.

Mpox Symptoms

Early symptoms of mpox are usually flu-like:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches and backache
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Chills
  • Exhaustion

Other symptoms usually develop a few days later:

  • A painful rash or sores, sometimes located on or near the genitals or anus, but sometimes in other areas such as the hands, feet, chest or face. These sores will go through several stages before healing.
  • Sores may be inside the body, including the mouth, vagina, or anus.

Note: Some people experience a rash or sores first, followed by other symptoms and some only experience a rash or sores.

When you can infect others: Mpox can be spread to others when symptoms begin and until all sores have healed and a fresh layer of skin has formed. Healing can take several weeks.

If You Have Symptoms

If you get a new or unexplained rash, especially if you have been in close contact with someone who has mpox:

  • Isolate at home.
  • Contact your healthcare provider for testing.

If You or Your Partner Have Mpox

  • Follow the treatment and prevention recommendations of your healthcare provider.
  • Avoid sex or being intimate with anyone until all your sores have healed and you have a fresh layer of skin formed.


More Information

The CDC has more information on mpox and protective steps.

Last reviewed on Jun 3, 2022 request edits

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Mississippi State Department of Health 570 East Woodrow Wilson Dr Jackson, MS 39216 866‑HLTHY4U Contact and information

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