Medical Students' Knowledge and Perceptions of Mpox in a High Incidence Region: Implications for Clinical Preparedness. Article

Nusynowitz, Jake, Jamneshan, Lily, Garba, Nana Aisha et al. (2023). Medical Students' Knowledge and Perceptions of Mpox in a High Incidence Region: Implications for Clinical Preparedness. . 7 37. 10.22454/primer.2023.120676

cited authors

  • Nusynowitz, Jake; Jamneshan, Lily; Garba, Nana Aisha; Samuels, Marquita; Bhoite, Prasad; Stumbar, Sarah E


  • Introduction

    In August 2022, mpox (formerly "monkeypox") was declared a public health emergency in the United States, yet there has been little published on medical providers' knowledge or perceptions of the disease. With one of the highest incidence rates in the United States being in South Florida, our Miami-based medical school aimed to assess students' perceived levels of knowledge and attitudes regarding mpox.


    An optional, anonymous survey consisting of multiple choice and Likert-type questions was emailed to all medical students. The first survey was sent out September 1, 2022, after which students received reminders on October 3, 8, and 31, 2022. We analyzed respondents' perceived knowledge and risk of contracting mpox by comparing responses between heterosexual and LGBTQ+ groups and preclinical and clinical groups. We used Mann-Whitney U or Kruskal Wallis tests for inferential statistical analysis.


    Of 480 medical students, 168 (35.0%) responded to the survey. Most respondents (88.1%) were not concerned about mpox; 95.2% perceived their personal risk to be moderate or low. LGBTQ+ students were significantly more likely than others to report feeling at risk from mpox. The majority (72.0%) of respondents reported poor perceived knowledge of mpox. There was no significant difference between preclinical and clinical students' reported level of perceived knowledge (P=.0621); 76.2% of respondents were not confident in their ability to recognize mpox symptoms. LGBTQ+ students were significantly more confident in identifying symptoms than others (P=.0201).


    Medical students feel they lack critical knowledge of mpox and report being unprepared to recognize disease symptoms. The higher level of perceived risk and knowledge among LGBTQ+ students may stem from biases perpetuated by public messaging regarding mpox. These findings highlight the need for integrating education on emerging epidemics into undergraduate medical education to enable students to safely provide high-quality patient care.

publication date

  • January 1, 2023

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


  • Electronic-eCollection

start page

  • 37


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