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Monkeypox is a viral disease that usually spreads from animals to humans, though the animals that spread it (such as certain rodents and monkeys) are not found in Canada. Monkeypox can also spread from person-to-person, mainly through direct physical contact with an infected person's:

  • Scabs / skin lesions or bodily fluids
  • Materials contaminated with the virus, such as bedding or clothes

Monkeypox can also spread through respiratory droplets. However, the virus does not spread efficiently this way.


  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches and pain
  • Swollen lymph nodes, such as in the neck and groin
  • Fatigue
  • Rash that usually starts one to three days after the symptom onset. The rash can then turn into scabs and lesions.

Monkeypox is usually mild and typically goes away on its own within two to four weeks.

If you have been exposed to a suspected or confirmed case of monkeypox, monitor for signs and symptoms for 21 days. If you develop symptoms of monkeypox, immediately self-isolate and contact your healthcare provider.

Based on Public Health assessment, a single dose of the Imvamune® vaccine may be recommended to people who have been identified by Public Health as a high-risk exposure of a probable or confirmed case of monkeypox, or within a setting where transmission is happening. Public Health will contact those individuals who have been identified as a high-risk exposure.

Vaccination clinics

Vaccination is by appointment only. Eligible individuals can book an appointment by calling Public Health at 905-688-8248 ext. 7425 or 1-800-263-7248. Visit our general immunization clinic schedule for more information.


  • Two-spirited, non-binary, trans- or cis-gender individuals who self-identify or have sexual partners who self-identify as belonging to the gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men (gbMSM) community and at least one of the following:
    • Have received a diagnosis of a bacterial STI such as chlamydia, gonorrhea or syphilis in the past two months
    • Have had two or more sexual partners or may be planning to
    • Have attended or may be planning to visit venues for sexual contact such as bath houses or sex clubs, or who work / volunteer in these settings
    • Have had anonymous sex or are planning to, for example using online hookup apps
    • Are a sexual contact of an individual who engages in sex work
  • Any individual who engages in sex work or may be planning to
  • Household and / or sexual contacts of those identified for PrEP eligibility and are moderately to severely immunocompromised or pregnant (may be at higher risk for severe illness from a monkeypox infection) may be considered for PrEP

Ontario is using a single dose of Imvamune® to limit ongoing transmission for most individuals eligible for PrEP. Two doses are recommended for eligible moderately to severely immunocompromised individuals and certain research laboratory employees, at least 28 days apart.

More information

For more detailed information on monkeypox, visit:

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