Monkey pox: US struggles to meet demand for vaccines

Monkey pox: US struggles to respond to request for vaccines


The United States, which expects an increase in monkeypox cases in the coming weeks, does not currently have enough vaccine doses to meet demand, acknowledged Friday a senior public health official. 

“I want to acknowledge that right now the demand for vaccines from the territories is higher than our available supply, and we know that's frustrating,” said Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC), the nation's primary federal public health agency.

“We don't have all the vaccines we would like to have yet,” she added at a press conference, saying she expected “an increase in cases in the coming weeks”.


Concern is growing, particularly in New York, the epicenter of the American epidemic, with nearly 390 cases detected as of July 14. The United States has a total of 1,470 cases.

This week, New York health services had to apologize after numerous hiccups on the vaccine reservation website, stormed when a thousand appointments have been made available.

“The supply of vaccines is extremely limited (…) across the country, and especially here in New York,” the director of the city's health department, Ashwin Vasan, said Thursday.


At the start of the epidemic in the United States, at the beginning of May, the authorities had only 2000 doses of the Jynneos vaccine (Imvanex in Europe), the only one approved specifically against monkeypox.

< p>Since then, 156,000 doses have been distributed in the country. Just over 130,000 have just been added to the national strategic reserve, and should begin to be delivered from Monday.

They will no longer be allocated to the various American states on an equal basis, but by giving priority to the most affected regions.

“I expect that there will be much more supply for the city of New York” in this new salvo, thus wanted to reassure Rochelle Walensky.

This two-dose vaccine is currently recommended for those who have been or may have been in contact with infected people. The disease currently circulates primarily among the homosexual population, with the vast majority of cases occurring in men who have sex with men.

It is characterized by skin rashes — which can appear on the genitals or in the mouth — and may be accompanied by fever, sore throat or pain in the lymph nodes. It usually heals spontaneously, but can be very painful.