COVID-19 Community Levels Map Update, Feb. 3, 2023: The CDC has listed all eight Connecticut Counties in the Medium/Yellow category.  The Connecticut Department of Public Health recommends that all residents consider wearing a mask in public indoor spaces. People who are at high risk for severe illness should consider additional measures to minimize their exposure to COVID-19 and respiratory illnesses. Visit the CDC COVID-19 Community Levels Map for updates.


Please visit covidtests.gov to request four free COVID-19 self-test kits from the Federal Government. Find a location that has a supply of COVID-19 therapeutics as part of the Test to Treat initiative here. The complete DPH COVID-19 toolbox is located at ct.gov/coronavirus.

Information For Health Providers

To discuss testing or report cases of suspected mpox, call CT DPH Epidemiology via phone at 860-509-7994, or 860-509-8000 if after hours. Effective July 1, 2022, Mpox is a Category 2 reportable disease in Connecticut. Connecticut DPH Epidemiology also can provide guidance in real time if a highly suspicious case is identified.


RECOMMENDATIONS FOR HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS

  • Appropriate infection prevention measures should be taken when examining patients and when collecting specimens for mpox evaluation. Information on infection prevention and control in healthcare settings is provided on the CDC website.
  • Patients with rashes initially considered characteristic of more common infections (e.g., varicella zoster or sexually transmitted infections) should be carefully evaluated for a characteristic mpox rash, and submission of specimens of lesions should be considered, especially if the person has epidemiologic risk factors for mpox infection.
  • Evaluate any individual presenting with perianal or genital ulcers, diffuse rash, or proctitis syndrome for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) per the 2021 CDC STI Treatment Guidelines. Testing for STIs should be performed. The diagnosis of an STI does not exclude mpox as a concurrent infection may be present. The clinical presentation of mpox may be similar to some STIs, such as syphilis, herpes, lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV), or other etiologies of proctitis.
  • Perform a thorough skin and mucosal (e.g., anal, vaginal, oral) examination for the characteristic vesiculo-pustular rash of mpox; this allows for detection of lesions the patient may not be able to visualize independently or that they may not have been previously aware of.
  • If a patient does not respond to STI treatment as expected, the patient should return for follow-up evaluation and mpox testing should be considered.
  • Advise patients with prodromal symptoms (e.g., fever, malaise, headache) and one or more epidemiologic risk factors for mpox to self-isolate. If a rash does not appear within 5 days, the illness is unlikely to be mpox and alternative etiologies should be sought. Testing can only be performed by sampling lesions at this time, if a rash should develop, the patient should return for testing. 

MPOX DIAGNOSTIC TESTING

Diagnostic testing for mpox is now available from commercial laboratories, including Aegis SciencesLabCorp, Mayo ClinicQuest, and Sonic Healthcare. Healthcare providers can order testing from these laboratories as they would order other diagnostic tests.

Testing is also available through the Connecticut State Public Health Laboratory (SPHL); effective July 18 2022, prior approval for testing at SPHL will no longer be required. Testing at SPHL will be available on a first come first served basis Monday through Friday with a daily cut-off time of 8AM. Specimens arriving after 8AM will be tested on the next scheduled testing day; specimens received after 8AM on Friday will be tested on the following Monday. To request urgent testing outside this schedule, call DPH Epidemiology at 860-509-7994, or 860-509-8000 after hours or on weekends.

Instructions for specimen collection are available here. Specimens submitted to SPHL must be accompanied by a completed requisition form. Specimens can be delivered to SPHL 24 hours per day/7 days per week. Facilities with routine courier service should make their own arrangements for specimen transport to SPHL. Courier service is a limited resource which is prioritized for locations that do not have access to a routine courier.


QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ABOUT MPOX FOR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS

The Clinicians FAQ answers common questions from healthcare providers and can be used together with CDC’s Information for Healthcare Professionals.


POST-EXPOSURE PROPHYLAXIS

CDC recommends post-exposure prophylaxis be considered for persons with high or intermediate level of exposure to the mpox virus. If a patient reports recent close-contact and may benefit from PEP, contact DPH at 860-509-7994, or 860-509-8000 after hours.

More information about considerations for mpox vaccination is available from CDC.


TREATMENT

Antivirals, such as tecovirimat (TPOXX), may be recommended for people who are more likely to get severely ill, like patients with weakened immune systems. Medical countermeasures for mpox including tecovirimat (TPOXX), Vaccinia Immune Globulin Intravenous (VIGIV), Cidofovir (Vistide), can be accessed through the Strategic National Stockpile. To request access to these therapeutics, contact DPH Epidemiology at 860-509-7994 or 860-509-8000 after hours.

More information on treatment options for mpox can be found here: Treatment Information for Healthcare Professionals | Mpox | Poxvirus | CDC

Guidance for Tecovirimat Use Under Expanded Access Investigational New Drug Protocol during 2022 U.S. Mpox Cases | Mpox | Poxvirus | CDC

TPOXX (tecovirimat) Label (fda.gov)

How to obtain tecovirimat (TPOXX) in Connecticut


ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS:

Webinar July 8, 2022 - Connecticut Department of Public Health Provider Update for Mpox

Connecticut Department of Public Health Provider Update for Mpox. July 8, 2022

Webinar June 29, 2022 - Mpox: Updates about Clinical Diagnosis and Treatment (cdc.gov)

Webinar May 24, 2022 - What Clinicians Need to Know about Mpox in the United States and Other Countries (cdc.gov)  

Mpox in the U.S.: An Update for Clinicians and the LGBTQ+ Community 

ESCMID/IDSA joint web symposium on Mpox. ESCMID eLearning. Faculty / Presenters. May 24, 2022; 363235

 

Go To:  Mpox Main | Information for Vaccine Providers Mpox Vaccination | Mpox Data