Illinois daycare worker contracts monkeypox, children exposed

There is a new monkeypox investigation underway in Illinois involving a daycare worker.

Now, the race is on to vaccinate the exposed children.

Even though health experts say the monkeypox virus is largely impacting a certain population, the grim reality is anyone can catch it — and with limited vaccine available, fear among many people is indeed growing.

The latest monkeypox outbreak involving a daycare worker in Rantoul, Illinois, which is about 120 miles from Chicago.

The public health department saying screening of children and other staff is underway.


It all comes as the Biden administration has declared monkeypox a public health emergency with over 7,500 cases in the US — 600 infections in Illinois, nearly 500 of them in Chicago.

"Touching a doorknob, trying on clothing in a store, traveling on an airplane, going in a swimming pool or other body of water, going to public restrooms, being on public transit, being at a grocery store, coffee shop or gym — at this point those are all believed to be unlikely sources of risk for MPV," Dr. Allison Arwady said.

According to health experts, the virus has disproportionately affected the LGBTQ+ community. However, anyone is susceptible. The virus is spread through close contact with bodily fluids, shared bedding, kissing, coughing and sneezing.

Although rarely fatal, symptoms include blisters, fever, chills and muscle aches.

Officials say the infected daycare worker in Rantoul is in isolation and doing well.