a strange new virus is infecting a small but growing part of the population. Bringing it under control requires accurate testing, extensive contact tracing, public health and safety measures, including responsible individual behavior and vaccination. But the lack of urgency among US institutions in the early stages of the outbreak, when it matters most, to effectively implement these measures has some experts worrying that the novel infectious disease could spiral out of control and into the US. may become endemic to the population.
In this example, the pathogen in question Is monkeypoxThe World Health Organization (WHO) recently dubbed A “Public Health Emergency of International Concern.” But the initial response to its emergence in the US has been similar to the initial failures of the COVID-19 pandemic. Monkeypox is spread by close or intimate contact with an infected person, usually through skin-to-skin or exchange of bodily fluids, although it can also be spread through contaminated objects. Symptoms include initial fever, severe headache, swollen lymph nodes and fatigue, followed by painful skin lesions on the face, extremities, mouth, and genitals. Symptoms usually last two to four weeks in adults.
Particularly worrying is the fact that unlike the early days of COVID, when the development of a new vaccine was necessary to contain this crisis, there is already an available vaccine. The drugmaker produces Genios, a vaccine for the Bavarian Nordic smallpox that can be used against the new virus. but it’s done hard to reach america Despite millions of existing supplements, critics were interrupted by a combination of an overly cautious approach by Biden administration officials and bureaucratic red tape (as well as some logistical problems associated with the shipment and storage of supplements from Europe).
On July 27, the Biden administration announced that 800,000 doses of monkeypox vaccine Will soon be made available and distributed to state and local health departments, and 310,000 doses have already been sent. But the outbreak began in early May, and US cases have risen to more than 4,900 since then, According to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in late spring, when cases were limited to certain demographics such as men who have sex with men and with multiple partners (close, direct contact is required for the virus to spread, though Anyone can contract it) there were only 2,000 available Geniose supplements available in the US, despite a national stockpile of over a million.
First, the Biden administration deployed a conservative approach and 72,000 only. requested More than 370,000 vaccine doses were ready to be shipped from a Bavarian Nordic facility in Denmark, where the company is headquartered. Delayed Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspection of a facility where doses were scheduled to be filled, with parades and events in the shipment and transfer process for hundreds of thousands of doses through the end of June. was delayed. ,
The Bavarian Nordic and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have explained that one reason for the cautious approach was not to overestimate available supplies because the vaccine has other important uses, and cooling and storage requirements further complicate logistics. But those stumbling blocks at the critical early juncture will likely have long-term effects, and the US has missed its golden opportunity to end the outbreak before it becomes a long-term problem.
“It is wrong to think of monkeypox outbreaks in weeks or months. The results will resonate for many, many years,” wrote Caitlin Rivers, an infectious disease epidemiologist and former CDC official, in a tweet, “Elimination will take the problem off the table. Spatialism will stretch indefinitely. [Monkeypox] Cannot be done [especially] Deadly but that doesn’t mean it’s irrelevant.”
It is wrong to think of monkeypox outbreaks in weeks or months. The results will resonate for many, many years. Elimination will take the problem off the table. Endemicity will stretch indefinitely. Mpx esp may not be fatal, but that doesn’t mean it’s irrelevant.
— Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeton) 26 July 2022
Many in the LGBTQ community have pointed out that monkeypox is a “gay disease” and the government’s slow response. Echoes of the HIV/AIDS Epidemic in the 1980s. WHO and public health organizations striking a balance Warning And Vaccines for at-risk communities to help stop the spread – while trying Back away from stigma and discrimination, Meanwhile, cases have now come to the fore at least one pregnant woman give more children who have had monkeypoxUnderlining that just because a virus starts by infecting a limited group of people, doesn’t mean it can’t spread to others soon.
Federal and local health officials have begun to accelerate the response in recent days and weeks. For example, commercial laboratory testing giants such as Quest Diagnostics Starting PCR tests for monkeypox To expand capacity, and states like North Carolina are expanding vaccine eligibility from current recommendations, that limits vaccination For those who have either had a sexual partner in the past two weeks who were infected with monkeypox or had multiple sexual partners in an area that has been affected by an outbreak of the virus in the past two weeks.
The Biden administration has also ordered an additional five million monkeypox vaccine doses, although they are not expected to be available until 2023. Meanwhile, the White House says it will intensify efforts to expand testing and vaccine availability. It may also appoint a special National Monkeypox Response Coordinator, similar to the current administrative role for COVID-19, to deal with different parts of the multi-pronged containment strategy.
“You all want coordination between different agencies,” Anthony Fauci saidDirector of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), in an appearance CNN on Tuesday. “You want someone to really coordinate all those things to get a better response. We’re doing well but we have to do a lot better.”