More monkeypox vaccines are coming to New York. Should I get vaccinated and how?

Yves gentlemen. The post is instructive, but not in a good way. Keep in mind that despite the dire spectacle of NYC hospitals overwhelmed with Covid patients in March 2020, this was not the fault of the city, but the result of Andrew Cuomo’s protracted and successful campaign to reduce hospital beds across the city. New York is handing out masks for free at subway stations and continues to provide free Covid tests (there are many stations). In other words, New York City is well above the low public health average in the US. The fact that he has trouble getting enough monkeypox vaccines, despite being a big hotspot and thus having to limit them, is not a good sign.

This post also has some useful general information about monkeypox.

Shantel Destra and Candice Pedraza. Originally published July 21, 2022 in THE CITY.

Workers register patients waiting for monkeypox vaccine at the Chelsea Sexual Health Clinic on July 11, 2022. Ben Fraktenberg/THE CITY

The introduction of the monkeypox vaccine in New York was fraught with technical difficulties, communication problems, and severe dose shortages.

When the first 1000 doses arrived at Chelsea Sexual Health Clinic At the beginning of June, appointments were filled almost immediately. The people who booked them waited for hours in long lines at the clinic as demand for the vaccine far outstripped supply.

In early July, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene announced that 6,000 new doses of the vaccine had arrived – only to put the booking on hold due to a glitch in the booking portal. Health Commissioner Ashwin Wasan tweeted apologized for the technical confusion and said the city “will get better in the coming days and weeks”.

More appointments opened on July 15, this time through the city’s own vaccine prescribing portal. Vax4NYC.gov. The change came after MedRite, which was previously under contract, faced big problems.

New Yorkers can now also text “MONKEYPOX” to 692692 to receive updates on vaccination slots, or make an appointment for vaccinations by calling 877-VAX-4NYC.

As of July 18, a total of 616 people in New York have tested positive for monkeypox. This is a significant jump from the previous week, when 223 cases were reported.

New York now has the highest number of monkeypox cases in the country, health officials said at a July 11 meeting. town hall for a flash. State and city health officials have urged the federal government to send more doses of the vaccine.

State and city health officials have urged the federal government to send more doses of the vaccine, including to letter Mayor Eric Adams sent President Biden July 11.

To cope with the deficit, the Ministry of Health said. July 15 that it would only prioritize first doses of vaccines “until we have enough vaccines.” According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the vaccine should ideally be given in two shots four weeks apart.

With all the confusion, you may wonder about the characteristics of a contagious viral disease, who is at risk, how concerned you should be, and how to access a vaccine.

We are here to help. Here is a guide on what to know about the monkeypox outbreak:

What is monkeypox?

Monkeypox is not new. It was first discovered in the 1970s, respectively to the World Health Organization, and since then cases have mostly connected for international travel to places where the disease is common, including central and western Africa.

The cause of the disease, which is part of the orthopoxvirus family along with smallpox, is unknown.

The CDC identified fever, headache, chills, and swollen lymph nodes as symptoms or monkeypox. Those infected are also known to have a pimple-like rash that can appear on the face, arms, legs, and mouth. The infection can last from 2 to 4 weeks.

How is monkeypox spread?

Monkeypox can distribute through direct contact with infected skin, bodily fluids, and intimate physical contact, as indicated by the CDC. The disease can also be spread through indirect contact with tissue, such as bedding, clothing, and underwear, that has been on infected areas of the skin.

During the city hall on July 18, health commissioner Wasan said we still don’t know if monkeypox can be transmitted through saliva, semen or vaginal secretions, or if infected people who don’t have symptoms can spread.

Many health experts who spoke to THE CITY said the spread of the disease was a concern.

“Any number of health experts will tell you that they could have seen the writing on the wall to know there would be an increase in population spread,” said Christian Grove, a professor at the CUNY School of Public Health.

This spread, in turn, gives the disease the opportunity to “better adapt to people and transmit more efficiently,” said Stephen Morse, professor of epidemiology at Columbia University Medical Center.

“These numbers are usually the tip of the iceberg,” said Wafaa El-Sadr, a professor of epidemiology and medicine at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “In all likelihood, there are still people infected who have not been tested.”

Experts told THE CITY that more doses of the vaccine are needed, and El-Sadr added that the public needs to be informed about the transmission of the disease and its symptoms urgently.

“We cannot allow the complacency of people who think that these are just a few hundred cases,” she said.

Who is most at risk?

The CDC has determined that gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men account for a large number of cases, according to early data. July 18 health consultations from the city health department said that 99% of cases are among men who have sex with men (MSM).

Vasan told the town hall on July 11 that “there is nothing intrinsic about this disease” that makes it more dangerous for these men, but rather that “this current outbreak is concentrated at the moment – and it started in this way – among social networks and sexual networks of gay, bisexual and men who have sex with other men.”

Experts who spoke to THE CITY agreed that a targeted approach to vaccinating groups currently at higher risk of contracting monkeypox could slow the spread of the disease.

El Sadr said the city’s health department should “think creatively” about distributing the vaccine to sexual health clinics and other locations across the city, building on lessons learned from COVID-19 vaccination efforts.

“You can’t expect people to come to you. You have to meet people where they are,” she said.

Where can I get the monkeypox vaccine?

Since the second week of July, monkeypox vaccines in New York have been offered by appointment from the health department to people who meet all or the following criteria:

  • Gay, bisexual or other men who have sex with men and/or transgender, gender non-conforming and non-binary people.
  • Those who are 18 years of age or older.
  • Those who have had “multiple or anonymous sex partners in the past 14 days” The health department said.

The vaccine is also offered to people who have been informed by the Ministry of Health that they have been in contact with a person with monkeypox.

A new round of vaccination will open on July 22 at 18:00, the city health department reported. announced.

To make an appointment, visit the New York City Department of Health. Web site or call 877-VAX-4NYC. However, be careful: the website has repeatedly gone down due to overloaded traffic.

As of July 13, the city’s health department said monkeypox vaccines would be available at the following locations:

  • Chelsea Sexual Health Clinic, 303 Ninth Avenue. in Manhattan
  • Sexual Health Clinic of Central Harlem, 2238 Fifth Ave. in Manhattan
  • Corona Sexual Health Clinic, 34-33 Junction Blvd. in Queens

An additional location, NYC Health + Hospitals/Gotham Health Vanderbilt in Staten Island, will soon be open several days a week.

Two vaccines – what’s the difference?

Two types of vaccines are used to treat monkeypox: JYNNEOS and ACAM2000. JYNNEOS is a vaccine that provided by the city. It is FDA-approved for the prevention of monkeypox in people over 18 years of age and is usually given in two doses four weeks apart.

You are considered “fully vaccinated” two weeks after your second dose. However, as previously mentioned, New York City switched to a “single dose” strategy in mid-July to deal with supply shortages.

Monkeypox vaccines, which are more commonly used to protect against smallpox, have proven to be very effective. According to the CDC. Even if you have contracted monkeypox, the vaccine is still effective in preventing more severe symptoms.

A second vaccine sometimes used to treat monkeypox, known as ACAM2000, carries risks for pregnant women and immunocompromised people, has serious side effects and requires multiple needle sticks. making report in the Atlantic.

Why are there so few available vaccines?

The JYNNEOS vaccine is manufactured by a small company in Denmark, whose manufacturing facility has been closed since August last year. informed.

At the end of June the White House came out outbreak response to immediately distribute an initial 56,000 vaccines to “jurisdictions with the highest number of cases and risk groups”, followed by 1.5 million vaccine doses over the next few months.

On June 30, Governor Kathy Hochul announced that 8,165 doses will soon be available in New York State. Just over a week later, the city’s health department announced 6,000 vaccines.

On July 11 at City Hall, Wasan and New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett and Wasan called New York “the epicenter of monkeypox” and complained that New York City was not getting enough doses from Washington.

“We received an allocation of 14% [of national vaccines] with 27% of cases,” said the doctor. Basset. “But whatever those numbers were, there weren’t enough vaccines. Clearly, more vaccines are needed.”

THE CITY will update this story as more information becomes available.

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