An electronic microscope image shows the monkeypox virus seen by a team from the Arbovirus Laboratory and the Genomics and Bioinformatics Units of the Carlos III Health Institute (ISCIII) in Madrid, Thursday May 26, 2022. Federal officials say there are 168 confirmed cases of monkeypox in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Unidad de Microscopia Electronica del ISCIII-via AP

An electronic microscope image shows the monkeypox virus seen by a team from the Arbovirus Laboratory and the Genomics and Bioinformatics Units of the Carlos III Health Institute (ISCIII) in Madrid, Thursday May 26, 2022. Federal officials say there are 168 confirmed cases of monkeypox in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Unidad de Microscopia Electronica del ISCIII-via AP

168 cases of monkeypox confirmed in Canada, including 141 in Quebec

The Public Health Agency of Canada says four cases have been reported in Alberta

Federal officials say there are 168 confirmed cases of monkeypox in Canada.

The Public Health Agency of Canada says 141 cases have been reported in Quebec, 21 in Ontario, four in Alberta and two in British Columbia as of Friday.

Canada’s chief public health officer says all infections have been in men aged 20 to 69.

Dr. Theresa Tam told a news conference that many cases have been linked to sexual contact with other men, but the virus can spread to anyone who has had close physical contact with an infected person.

Tam says local health authorities have indicated that the rate of growth is slowing, and they’ll be tracking the disease’s trajectory over the next weeks.

Montreal officials expanded the city’s vaccination campaign Tuesday to all men who have sex with men, and Toronto started holding clinics to immunize high-risk individuals earlier this week.

Monkeypox belongs to the same virus family as smallpox, and smallpox vaccines have proven effective in combatting the related virus.

– The Canadian Press