HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- An adult hospitalized with various severe illnesses as well as a presumptive positive monkeypox case has died, Harris County officials said on Monday.
Harris County Public Health did not identify the person who died at a hospital in the county on Sunday, adding that an autopsy will determine what role, if any, monkeypox may have played in this person's death.
The video above is from a previous report on monkeypox FAQs
"We are sharing this information to err on the side of transparency and to avoid potential misinformation about this case," Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo said.
No other information about the patient, including the person's gender and age, was immediately given.
The development comes as Texas Department of State Health Services counted more than 1,400 cases statewide, with nearly 600 of those in the Houston area. Most of those testing positive are men.
Monday's announcement was a main reason that Judge Hidalgo gave in accelerating vaccinations in the community.
"The best way for us to fight this virus is through vaccines. Our goal is still to get as many people who qualify vaccinated as quickly as possible - I have always felt that vaccines are the key to reducing spread," Hidalgo said.
If you or a loved one is suspected of being exposed to monkeypox, you're urged to contact your healthcare provider. If you have questions regarding monkeypox testing, vaccinations and other guidance, you can call the monkeypox hotline at 832-927-0707 or visit the HCPH monkeypox guidance web page.
According to HCPH, monkeypox is a zoonotic disease that includes a painful rash, which may look like pimples or blisters, often with an earlier flu-like illness. Zoonotic diseases are infectious diseases that are transmitted between species, from animals to humans, or from humans to animals and humans to humans.