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22-726 Monkeypox: Learn About Symptoms, Where to Test and How to Treat

Date: 08/29/22

This information applies to Physicians, Participating Physician Groups (PPGs), Hospitals, Community Supports (CS), Enhanced Care Management (ECM), and Ancillary providers.

For Medi-Cal, this information applies to Kern, Los Angeles, Riveside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Joaquim, Stanislaus and Tulare counties.

Access the latest guidance on the new provider
resource page

Monkeypox (MPX) is a disease caused by a virus. It is contagious until all sores are healed, which can take several weeks. It is similar to smallpox but usually less severe.

Use this update to help you identify patients who may need further care options and how to find the current MPX news and guidance.

New MPX resource page for providers

Due to the rapidly changing MPX situation, we want to ensure you have the most current information to treat your patients.

Access the Monkeypox (MPX) Resources for Providers page for the information you need in two steps:

  1. Go to the provider portal.  
  2. Select MPX Information and Guidance (under Monkeypox (MPX) Resources for Providers).

The page contains FAQs, resources from public health organizations for you and your patients, and easy access to communications that have been distributed to providers about MPX. Check the page often, as it will be updated with more information and guidance as it becomes available.

What are symptoms of MPX

Patients may experience one or more flu-like symptoms (fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes, body aches) that last from one to three days.

Next, a rash or sores develop. The rash can be painful and itchy as it heals. It may affect the face and extremities or only one part of the body. Note that some patients may only have a rash without flu-like symptoms.

Let’s get tested

If your patient has a new or unexplained rash/sores, they should be tested to confirm MPX. At the same time, you should also test for other more common causes for a rash (e.g., secondary syphilis, herpes, chancroid, molluscum contagiosum, and varicella zoster).

Commercial laboratory testing for the detection of orthopoxviral DNA (including the MPX virus) is now available. Patients can get tested at one of the labs listed below that’s nearest to them. Results are available in two to three days.

  • Quest Diagnostics®
  • Lapcorp
  • Aegis Sciences®
  • WestPack Labs (part of Sonic healthcare USA)

Testing positive

Patients who test positive for MPX may be eligible for treatment with TPOXX® (generic name – tecovirimat). For assistance from a public health physician in obtaining TPOXX, contact your local public health agency by visiting the California Department of Public Health (CDPH)

Use the link provided to access county health departments/the Medical and Health Operational Area Coordinator for contact tracing resources and other help.

Limited supply of vaccines for MPX

There are two MPX vaccines currently available in the United States – JYNNEOS and ACAM2000. To help protect against MPX, individuals should be vaccinated:

  • Within four days after an exposure for Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP).
  • Between 4–14 days after exposure, vaccination may help reduce symptoms, but may not prevent infection.

The federal government has allocated a limited number of JYNNEOS vaccine doses to California. CDPH is working with local health departments to make these doses available. Visit CDPH for current MPX vaccine allocation at Local Health Jurisdictions. 

Vaccine name

How it’s used and side effects…


Licensed for adults ages 18 and over.

Dispensed as a two-dose injection series in the upper arm at least 4 weeks apart.

Causes minor reactions which include pain, redness, swelling and itching at the injection site. Less common, people also may experience muscle pain, headache, fatigue (tiredness), nausea, chills, and fever.

JYNNEOS is prioritized for certain groups

Due to the current limited supply of the JYNNEOS vaccine, it has been prioritized for people who qualify in one of the following three groups:

Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP)

Known close contacts of MPX cases who are identified by public health via case investigation, contact tracing and risk exposure assessments.

Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP)++

Individuals with certain risk factors who are more likely to have been recently exposed to MPX even if they have not had documented exposure to someone with confirmed MPX, such as people who attended an event or venue where there was known MPX exposure.

Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP)

Individuals at occupational risk of MPX according to Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) guidance, including: laboratory workers who perform MPX testing, and clinical and public health workers who collect MPX specimens.

More doses have been requested which will allow for greater vaccination efforts to include PrEP to other individuals such as gay, bisexual, trans and other men who have sex with men who are at high risk of MPX exposure.

Other available resources

Check out these resources for additional information about MPX:

Vaccine technical information for healthcare providers.

L.A. County Department of Public Health.

L.A. LGBT Center with links to fact sheets in English and Spanish.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) –

American Medical Association for coding and guidance.

Additional information

If you have questions about the information contained in this update), contact the Health Net Provider Services Center by email within 60 days, by phone or through the Health Net provider website as listed below:

Line of business

Phone number

Email address

EnhancedCare PPO (IFP & SBG)


Health Net Employer Group HMO, POS, HSP, PPO, & EPO


IFP (CommunityCare HMO, PPO, PureCare HSP, & PureCare One EPO)


Medicare (Individual & Employer Group)


Cal MediConnect – Los Angeles County


Cal MediConnect – San Diego County





Last Updated: 09/07/2022