Trenton, N.J. (CBS) – The day after monkeypox was declared a public health emergency, advocates say additional resources cannot be provided quickly enough. Vaccines are still very limited and cases are spreading rapidly.
New Jersey health officials say the monkeypox outbreak is occurring at the worst possible time. This is the height of summer vacation when people flock to the Jersey Shore. They say the majority of monkeypox cases are in the northeastern part of the Garden State.
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“Although the risk to the public remains low, anyone who has been in contact with a monkeypox patient can contract the virus,” said Darby-McDermott.
Monkeypox causes a rash and flu-like symptoms. According to authorities, it is mainly diagnosed among homosexual men and is transmitted through close personal contact, although it can also be transmitted through objects.
Cathy Ahern of the Hyacinth Foundation says, “It’s very easily transmitted through contact, towels on the beach, and bedding.
There are now more than 7,000 cases nationwide.
“It’s one of the most painful experiences of my life,” said patient Luke Brown.
With the declaration of a national public health emergency, more resources, including funding and personnel, will be directed to fighting the outbreak.
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“Hopefully it will also speed up vaccine production,” said Sarah Bass.
With 600,000 doses of the vaccine distributed nationwide and another 150,000 doses due in September, it is still not enough.
Dr. Ashish Jha, the White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator, said:
To expand supplies, many places like Philadelphia are only offering one dose instead of the recommended two doses and are only offering the vaccine to those at highest risk.
Federal officials are currently considering single-dose vials of the vaccine so that they can be administered separately.
For some people, vaccines are not readily available.
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“I got the results today that the monkeypox that I already knew was detected,” said Larry Jackson.