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Quebec health ministry confirms 52 cases of monkeypox

The number of monkeypox cases in Quebec has more than doubled since last week, according to figures released Wednesday.

The Ministry of Health and Social Services reported in a tweet that the number of confirmed cases rose to 52, which is up from 25 last week.

The increase in cases comes as Quebec is the first province in Canada to start vaccinating close contacts of those who were infected by the rare disease, also known as the “ring vaccination” approach to prevent a wider outbreak.

Also on Wednesday, Toronto confirmed its second monkeypox infection as well as a handful of other suspected cases.

Globally, there are more than 550 confirmed infections across 30 countries, according to the World Health Organization.

While officials in Quebec say cases have generally been mild, public health is hoping to prevent a wider outbreak by administering vaccines — ideally — within four days of expsoure and advising people to monitor for symptoms for the next 21 days if they came in contact with an infected person.

Symptoms of monkeypox include fever, headache, muscle aches, exhaustion, swollen lymph nodes and sores.

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