Following an increase in cases, the US has declared the monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency.

It comes after the World Health Organization (WHO) issued its highest emergency alert due to an increase in cases across the globe less than two weeks ago.

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The US’s decision to declare the illness a public health emergency will hasten the distribution of drugs, vaccines, and other federal resources to stop the virus’ spread.

The three states with the highest caseloads are New York, California and Illinois.

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More than 26,000 cases have been confirmed worldwide this year, data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows.

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Although anyone can catch monkeypox, the outbreak has been largely concentrated among men who have sex with men.

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The virus typically causes pimple-like rashes, which can be extremely itchy and painful, to develop and spread across the body, as well as other complications.

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