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Los Angeles County health officials on Monday confirmed the first death in a local resident from the monkeypox disease.
The death is believed to be the first in the U.S., but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has not yet confirmed any U.S. deaths, the Associated Press reported.
A CDC spokesperson confirmed to the AP that they are working with LA County officials.
The deceased resident was critically ill and hospitalized, Los Angeles Public Health officials said in a news release.
“Public Health sends its deepest condolences and best wishes for healing to the families and friends grieving the loss of a loved one,” the news release said.
No further information about the patient has been released.
Health officials recommend that anyone with a weakened immune system and those with monkeypox seek medical attention immediately.
The virus is transmitted by skin-to-skin contact or respiratory droplets from an infected person and is very painful.
The United States has the most cases in the world, AP reported, citing the CDC. California has recorded the most cases nationally, with blacks and Latinos disproportionately affected.
More information about monkeypox is available at Los Angeles Public Health website.