COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – As Columbus Public Health (CPH) prepares for more monkeypox cases and more doses of the monkeypox vaccine, a Columbus man is sharing his experience with the virus.
“It’s not a storm you want to weather,” said Nick Post. “It’s pretty bad.”
His symptoms started with a headache earlier in July. He developed some other flu like symptoms and eventually a lesion. He then got tested for monkeypox and says it came back positive. Then the symptoms got worse. His lymph nodes were extremely swollen and at times he was in a lot of pain.
“There were definitely nights where I just couldn’t sleep at all,” he said. “My legs at one point, it just felt like I couldn’t even walk, like it was just really bad. It’s not something you want to get at all. And it can leave a permanent mark.”
Post is pushing for increased vaccine availability so others don’t have to go through what he has. Supply is limited nationwide. The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) expects the state will receive more vaccines in the coming weeks and months, according to a spokesperson.
Right now, CPH Commissioner Dr. Mysheika Roberts say there’s only enough to vaccinate close contacts of those who test positive. She expects CPH to get more supply in August.
“We are preparing to have more cases but most importantly we are preparing to get more vaccine so we can vaccinate those at highest risk before they could be exposed to monkeypox to hopefully reduce their chances of getting monkeypox,” said Dr. Roberts. “Unfortunately, it’s not going to be enough to cover the community that’s at risk but it will provide some protection.”
While doctors say the risk to the general population is low, cases are on the rise. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention map shows 17 cases in Ohio. Ten of those cases are in Franklin County, according to CPH.
The physical effects aren’t the only ones Post is recovering from. He needs to be in person for his job but hasn’t been able to go in for a few weeks because of the virus.
“That’s like the cherry on top of like great, that too, so figuring out afterwards now how I’m going to get my finances back to where I need to get them,” he said when discussing a GoFundMe he started to help cover time he missed at work.
Post says he was just told this week he is no longer contagious and is now talking with his boss about when he can go back to work.
Dr. Roberts say most people recover from monkeypox. She says two of the Franklin County cases have been hospitalized because of the pain.