One person in Toronto’s shelter system has tested positive for monkeypox, the city has confirmed.
A spokesperson for the City of Toronto, which runs shelters and accommodation for people experiencing homelessness, confirmed the case.
The individual was transferred to an isolation and recovery site, a system first set up during the COVID-19 pandemic to stop the coronavirus from spreading in congregate settings.
“This site will also accommodate clients that require isolation due to monkeypox,” the city said.
Toronto Public Health says monkeypox is “a rare viral illness that causes fever, headache, swollen lymph nodes and tiredness, followed by a rash over a person’s body.”
It is usually spread through close contact.
Between May 20 and July 28, Ontario recorded 367 cases of monkeypox. The average age of the individuals was 39 years old and 99.5 per cent of cases were among men.
A total of 291 confirmed and probable cases were reported in Toronto during that time, according to data from Public Health Ontario.
The City of Toronto said anyone in its shelter system with COVID-19 or monkeypox will be asked to isolate, potentially in a shelter hotel space.
Toronto Public Health and the city’s housing division are working to establish the viability of a monkeypox vaccination program in shelters, the city said.
Monkeypox vaccine clinics have previously been set up to target high-risk people, including those working in bathhouses.