COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – State health officials on Thursday announced two additional confirmed cases of monkeypox in South Carolina, bringing the statewide total to four.

The first confirmed cases of the rare viral illness were reported by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control on July 8.  Health officials at the time said the cases were among patients in the Lowcountry and in the Midlands.

In an update on DHEC’s website Thursday afternoon, the state health agency said there are currently four cases of monkeypox in the state.

“DHEC is responding to cases and vaccinating high-risk contacts with a safe FDA-approved vaccine for monkeypox,” officials said in the announcement.

According to DHEC, monkeypox is a rare, but potentially serious viral illness that usually begins with flu-like symptoms and swelling of the lymph nodes, which then progresses to a rash on the face and body. Officials said most infections last two to four weeks.