Monkeypox cases in some U.S. cities appear to be declining but experts are cautiously optimistic that the outbreak may have peaked in places hit hardest by the virus in the country.
The World Health Organization, earlier on Thursday, said monkeypox cases reported globally declined by 21% last week, after a month-long trend of rising infections, but noted that U.S. cases continued to rise.
Some U.S. experts believe cases are starting to decline based largely on immunity from prior infection and behaviour changes as awareness of the disease has grown. That does not mean the disease will be contained, they cautioned.
Since late May, the United States has recorded nearly 17,000 monkeypox cases. The outbreak, which so far has reached 80 countries outside of Africa, where the virus is endemic, is largely being transmitted among men who have sex with men.
Monkeypox, which is spread through close contact with an infected individual and the pus-filled sores common to the disease, is rarely fatal.