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4 new cases of mpox detected in Toronto

Toronto Public Health is reminding residents at risk for mpox to get vaccinated "as soon as possible" after four new cases of the viral disease were reported during a 24-hour period last week.

The cluster of new cases reported on Jan. 27 comes after months of no new infections in Toronto.

In fact, the most recent report released by Public Health Ontario showed that there were no new cases of mpox, formerly known as monkeypox, reported in the province from late October until Dec. 13.

Since then, Public Health Ontario has discontinued regular reporting, citing the "steady decline in mpox cases."

"After a period with no reported cases of MPOX in Ontario, four new cases in a single day is concerning," said Dane Griffiths, director of the Gay Men's Sexual Health Alliance.

Ontario's chief medical officer of health, Dr. Kieran Moore, previously said that mpox activity peaked in the province in July and had been trending downward.

However, in its release, Toronto Public Health noted that "the virus continues to circulate."

To be eligible for vaccination in Ontario, residents must identify as transgender, part of the LGBTQ2S+ community or as a man who has sex with men, in addition to meeting other criteria.

Toronto Public Health said in a news release that while anyone can contract MPOX, "gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men have been the most affected" during the current outbreak.

The most recent statistics show that all but six of the 691 cases detected in Ontario to date have involved men.

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