Indiana Daily Student

Little change in COVID cases, 28 new monkeypox cases this week

There has been little change in COVID-19 case numbers from the previous week’s update. In response to increasing monkeypox cases, Indiana has made new efforts to combat the disease. 

Monroe County reported 729 COVID-19 cases and four deaths in the past month, while the state had 58,391 COVID-19 cases and 214 deaths.

Despite these numbers, the transition to at-home tests for many has caused cases to go unreported, including in Monroe County.  

Over the summer, IU removed its COVID-19 dashboard. However, students can still get free PCR tests through drop-off testing and up to four free antigen tests per month from vending machines in the Indiana Memorial Union and the McNutt center building. 

Anyone older than six months can now receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccination appointments can be made at ourshot.in.gov. 

Earlier this week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved updated vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer. The vaccine targets the BA.4 and BA.5 coronavirus variants, which have evaded prior versions of the vaccine more easily. The vaccine will become available as early as next week. 

There have been 169 cases of monkeypox reported in Indiana since the first case in June. This is an increase of 28 cases in a week. As of Sep. 2, 19 U.S. states and the District of Columbia have more cases than Indiana. 

Most cases have been concentrated in central Indiana, with nearly 40% of cases affecting those 18 to 29, according to a new Indiana monkeypox dashboard

The first monkeypox death in the U.S. may have occurred in Texas on Aug. 30, although this is not yet confirmed. 

The main symptom of monkeypox is a rash that resembles pimples or blisters. Other symptoms of monkeypox include fever, cough and nasal congestion. 

Positive Link at IU Health is offering monkeypox vaccines for high risk individuals at its weekly vaccine clinic on Tuesdays.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article incorrectly reported the number of cases in a month as cases in a week.

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