October 18, 2022
Important Safety Information for Monkeypox Specimen Collection and Infection Control
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to receive reports of unsafe specimen collection practices involving sharps (e.g. needles, scalpels). In the United States, at least three healthcare personnel have acquired monkeypox infection from sampling lesions while using a sharp instrument. It is not necessary or recommended to unroof, open, or aspirate monkeypox lesions with sharps to increase sample yield. Injuries sustained from sharps used during specimen collection pose a high risk of exposure, given the large amounts of infectious virus the lesions from monkeypox disease contain. Postexposure prophylaxis (PEP) should be offered when a healthcare worker is injured by contaminated sharps during specimen collection or another clinical activity (e.g., phlebotomy).
CDC recommends that healthcare providers adhere to all recommended infection prevention and control measures, including using proper personal protective equipment (PPE) to reduce the risk of monkeypox virus transmission in healthcare settings. This includes outpatient settings such as urgent care clinics, emergency departments, and clinics providing evaluation for sexually transmitted infections where monkeypox patients are frequently initially evaluated.
Safe Specimen Collection
Healthcare Personnel Exposures
Infection Prevention and Control
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