What is happening
Vaccines are offered to people at high risk of monkeypox, but doses are limited.
Why is it important?
Getting the vaccine before or after exposure can reduce your risk of getting the disease and slow its spread.
What does it mean to you?
Some men who have sex with men and some men who have been exposed to monkeypox are also eligible for the vaccine. Given the limited supply, people can only get the first dose of the two-dose vaccine for now.
Although the United States has a national stockpile of vaccines that work against smallpox and monkeypox, the newer monkeypox vaccine currently available, Jynneos, is in relatively short supply. Officials who spoke to The New York Times said this was in part because the government waited too long to ask Bavarian Nordic, which makes Jynneos, to package and fill the vaccine order the United States had already purchased.
Another Times report claims that the US national stockpile of mumps and smallpox vaccines has dwindled because the government never replaced expired doses and instead invested in technology that extended their shelf life. Part of the reason for this was that the government did not reserve for monkeypox, but for smallpox, a more contagious and often more serious disease.
The US Department of Health and Human Services did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the reports.
Jynneos said the vaccine, which is being shipped to states and cities, is primarily for men who have sex with men and other people who may have been exposed and are currently at higher risk during an outbreak. Federal officials have acknowledged that demand for the vaccine is outstripping supply, and HHS is sending more doses to states. As of July 28, the agency said it had delivered 340,000 doses in the United States and planned to release an additional 786,000 doses. According to estimates given by “Times”, about 3.5 million doses of vaccine are needed to fight the epidemic.
The federal government has promised that a total of 6.9 million doses will be available by mid-2023, but some critics have warned that the public health response to monkeypox has been too slow and that those doses could end up in people’s arms, too late to prevent the disease from spreading across the U.S. can be.
Dr. Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, an infectious disease specialist and senior scientist. “We’re kind of playing chase,” Amesh Adalja said.
In high-incidence areas such as San Francisco, New York, and Washington, DC, people eligible for the vaccine receive only the first dose of a two-dose series. Officials said it would still provide protection against monkeypox and was consistent with the response in other countries, including Canada and the United Kingdom.
What we know about the Jynneos monkeypox vaccine and who is eligible for it. Also, what you need to know about ACAM2000, an older generation vaccine that also works against monkeypox.
Vaccination requirements: Who is eligible for the monkeypox vaccine?
The exact criteria for who should get the monkeypox vaccine depends on the city or state people live in and how widespread the outbreak is, but men who have sex with men. and Those who have had multiple or anonymous sexual partners in the past two weeks are eligible in cities like New York. This is because most cases of the current outbreak are in gay and bisexual men, although anyone in close contact with monkeypox can contract the disease.
According to the CDC, you meet the criteria for the monkeypox vaccine if:
- You are a contact of someone with monkeypox or have been identified through contact tracing.
- You have had a sexual partner with monkeypox in the past two weeks.
- You have had multiple sexual partners in the past two weeks in an area where monkeypox is common.
- You are a laboratory or health worker around orthopoxviruses, including animals.
If you are concerned about monkeypox and think you are at high risk of exposure, check your city and state’s current guidelines. You can also contact your doctor or book a vaccination appointment online, a process that will help you go through the eligibility criteria. Here is New York City’s immunization schedule website. You can make an appointment and find vaccinations in San Francisco by calling one of the city clinics or visiting the location.
What are the monkeypox vaccines? Who is immune from smallpox vaccine?
The US national stockpile has two vaccines that work against monkeypox, but the newer and preferred Jynneos vaccine is limited in availability. Jynneos is given to people before exposure as well as after exposure.
Gynneos (developed by Bavarian Nordic) is a new generation vaccine approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2019 against monkeypox and smallpox. This is a two-dose vaccine, with each shot given four weeks apart. It uses an attenuated virus and is approved for people 18 and older who are at high risk of contracting monkeypox or smallpox.
Jynneos is a vaccine that is being shipped and is currently being used to control monkeypox in the United States. Due to limited supply, you will likely only be able to make an appointment for the first dose at this time. In New York, for example, health officials say you will be contacted in the coming weeks about a second dose if you take the first dose.
ACAM2000 is a second-generation smallpox vaccine that also works against monkeypox. According to the CDC, ACAM2000 is a derivative of Dryvax that helps eliminate smallpox. (The two diseases are closely related, and both are caused by orthopoxviruses, which makes it possible.) The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said it is also prepared to ship more ACAM2000 vaccine from Jynneos if needed. it is a second choice in monkeypox reaction because it has a side effect profile that is not safe for some people.
ACAM2000 is administered differently than the usual vaccinations we are used to. It is given by dipping a needle into the vaccine solution, then “puncturing” the upper arm several times. It will cause a local infection (“pox”) that causes an immune response.
Although ACAM2000 does not cause smallpox, it contains a live vaccine virus that is not suitable for everyone. It can be dangerous for immunocompromised people, pregnant women, and those with certain heart or skin conditions such as eczema.
Smallpox was declared eradicated from the world in 1980. The US stopped routine vaccination against it in 1972, although some health care workers or people working in laboratories may have been vaccinated. Historically, according to the CDC, smallpox vaccines have been 95% effective against the infection and protect you for about three to five years, after which protection begins to wane.
Therefore, people born before the early 1970s who received the smallpox vaccine may have some cross-protective immunity to monkeypox, according to the WHO, but young people living in non-endemic countries have “less immunity” because they have not been exposed to a similar virus. .
How effective are vaccines against monkeypox? How long does it take to work?
If Jynneos is given within four days of exposure to monkeypox, it is the best option for stopping the onset of the disease, according to the CDC. If given 4 to 14 days after exposure, the CDC says Jynneos may not prevent monkeypox, but it will reduce the severity of your symptoms.
The CDC says the Jynneos vaccine takes two weeks (14 days) after the second dose to establish immunity, and ACAM2000 takes four weeks for maximum immunity. Although many people currently only take the first dose of Jynneos, early research suggests that one dose may still provide some protection, at least for a shorter period of time.
Because the monkeypox outbreak in the U.S. is so new, it’s not clear how effective vaccines will be in the current situation, according to the CDC. The agency says Jynneos’ effectiveness against monkeypox has been confirmed in animal studies. Although it will not be used in most cases, ACAM2000 is closely related to the Dryvax vaccine, which helps prevent smallpox. The effectiveness of ACAM2000 is confirmed by animal studies as well as human clinical trials.
You should still self-isolate if you develop monkeypox symptoms, such as a rash, after being vaccinated.
Why is there a stockpile of monkeypox vaccine in the US?
The US has a stockpile of Jynneos and ACAM2000, not because the country is concerned about an outbreak of monkeypox (which has been endemic in several African countries for years), but in case smallpox becomes a public threat again. Smallpox was declared eradicated in the 1980s, and the last natural outbreak in the United States occurred in 1949.
“The reserve was created during a biological weapons attack on the United States with smallpox,” Adalja said. According to Adalja, in this case, health workers will not prescribe vaccines or use only the new generation vaccine.
“If there was smallpox, we would use whatever vaccine we had to fight it,” he said.
The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or health goals.