Two more cases of monkeypox (MPX) have been detected in the community, officials say.
One is in Auckland and the other is in Wellington, Te Whatu Ora (Health New Zealand) reported.
Te Whatu Ora said both of the cases had been identified as community transmission within New Zealand.
This brings the total number of confirmed cases – both active and recovered – to 25.
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Nine were transmitted overseas and 16 have identified as community transmission.
Te Whatu Ora said the general risk of MPX remained low and while anyone was able to get monkeypox, overseas it had mostly impacted men who have sex with men.
“There is a higher risk of catching MPX for these communities.”
The first cases of MPX community transmission – two cases in Auckland – were announced earlier in October.
To date, there have been community cases in Auckland, Waikato and Wellington.
Officials earlier said the increase in cases “was not unexpected” and the growth in case numbers “reflected overseas trends”.
However, they said MPX was “rare” and the risk of it spreading widely in New Zealand “remains low as it is not very contagious”.
The virus is generally transmitted through close physical, intimate or sexual contact with someone who has MPX, direct contact with rashes, lesions, scabs or bodily fluid of someone with the virus, or touching the clothing, bedding or towels used by someone with an MPX rash.
Te Whatu Ora (Health New Zealand) earlier said a vaccine to protect those at highest risk from MPX would not be available until at least December.
It was working with Pharmac to secure supply of the smallpox vaccine Jynneos.
But given global supply constraints of Jynneos and high demand, the supplier had indicated doses were anticipated to be available for New Zealand “from December”, a Te Whatu Ora spokesperson said.