Monkey pox outbreak becomes a public health emergency in the United States

The decision should make it possible to release funds, facilitate data collection and deploy more personnel to fight the disease. The United States declared the monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency on Thursday, August 4.

“We are ready to step up our response to the virus and call on all Americans to take monkeypox seriously and do what is necessary to help us fight the virus.”asked the American Minister of Health, Xavier Becerra.

The declaration, in effect for ninety days, renewable, comes when the number of cases recorded in the United States exceeds Thursday 6,600 – of which about a quarter are in New York State alone. Experts fear that the real figure is much higher, however, due to sometimes very discreet symptoms, such as simple lesions.

Some 1.6 million people at risk

The Federal State provided approximately 600,000 doses of the vaccine, marketed under the name of Jynneos in North America, Imvanex in Europe and initially developed for smallpox. This number, however, remains a far cry from the approximately 1.6 million people considered to be at high risk in the country.

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The Department of Health said last week that 99% of the cases recorded in the United States concern men who have sex with men. This population is the priority target for vaccination.

Read also: Monkey pox: why are gay and bisexual men more affected?

Unlike previous waves in Africa, this new outbreak of monkeypox is mostly spread through sex, but US health officials, the CDC, say other routes are possible, including bed-sharing. , clothing and prolonged face-to-face contact.

The World Health Organization had triggered its highest level of alert at the end of July in order to strengthen the fight against monkeypox. On Thursday, the American drug agency, the FDA, said it was studying the possibility of authorizing caregivers to administer five doses of vaccine from a single one by modifying the way it is injected.

The first symptoms of monkeypox are high fever, swollen lymph nodes, and a chickenpox-like rash.

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The World with AFP

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