Health Care

DC and NYC quickly max out on monkeypox vaccines

New York City and Washington, D.C., both ran through their supplies of vaccines to treat monkeypox less than a day after launching their local immunization initiatives.

New York became the first major city in the U.S. to begin offering vaccines for monkeypox last week, making the two-dose Jynneos smallpox vaccine available to men who have sex with men as well as men who have had multiple sexual partners in the past 14 days.

The city gave no prior indication of its plans to start administering vaccine,s and the one clinic that was giving out doses was out of appointments on the same day it started booking them.

On Monday, D.C. followed New York by announcing that it too would make rounds of Jynneos available to gay and bisexual men; transgender women and gender-nonconforming people; sex workers; and people who work in high-risk situations.

D.C. Health made appointments available beginning at 1 p.m. ET, and within hours there were no more appointments available on the department’s website. The department had warned in its announcement that the city had a limited supply of vaccine available from the federal government.

On Twitter, D.C. Health said, “When additional doses become available, the vaccination scheduling portal will reopen. Stay tuned to D.C. Health’s social platforms for updates.”

The most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates there are 37 confirmed monkeypox cases in New York state and 16 confirmed cases in D.C. It remains unclear when the federal government will send out more doses.

When monkeypox cases began cropping up around the U.S., federal health authorities said there were about 72,000 doses of Jynneos in the Strategic National Stockpile, a paltry amount compared to the more than 100 million doses of ACAM2000, an older smallpox vaccine.

Local and state governments have so far expressed a preference for the newer Jynneos smallpox vaccine due to concerns over the possible side effects associated with ACAM2000. Earlier this month, the White House said it is expecting at least 300,000 more doses of Jynneos to be available within the next few weeks.

There are currently more than 200 confirmed monkeypox cases in the U.S. and more than 4,300 cases worldwide in 48 nonendemic countries.

Tags D.C. Jynneos monkeypox New York City Washington D.C.

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