Monkeypox Declared Imminent Threat in San Francisco and New York State


With these declarations, the areas can use funds to help with preparedness and response to prevent the further spread of the disease.

microscope look at monkeypox

Monkeypox (Adobe Stock)

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Monkeypox incidence rates continue to grow prompting both New York State and the city of San Francisco to declare local public health emergencies for the virus in recent days. This comes after July 23, 2022, when the World Health Organization declared monkeypox a global health emergency.

According to the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) statistics provided on July 29, there were 5189 confirmed monkeypox/orthopoxvirus cases in the US.

New York State alone accounted for 1345 cases, and the state of California had 799.

"Based on the ongoing spread of this virus, which has increased rapidly and affected primarily communities that identify as men who have sex with men, and the need for local jurisdictions to administer vaccines, I've declared monkeypox an Imminent Threat to Public Health throughout New York State," NY State Commissioner of Health Mary T. Bassett, MD, MPH, said in a statement. "This declaration means that local health departments engaged in response and prevention activities will be able to access additional State reimbursement, after other Federal and State funding sources are maximized, to protect all New Yorkers and ultimately limit the spread of monkeypox in our communities."

New York has secured more than 60,000 doses of the JYNNEOS monkeypox vaccine to date, including those for New York City.

According to the New York State press release, officials said all New Yorkers can protect themselves and prevent the spread of monkeypox in their communities:

  • Ask sexual partners whether they have a rash or other symptoms consistent with monkeypox.
  • Avoid skin-to-skin contact with someone who has a rash or other monkeypox-related symptoms.
  • Contact a health care provider following exposure or symptoms, and check with your local county health department about vaccine eligibility.
  • New Yorkers who receive the JYNNEOS vaccine should receive both doses, given four-weeks apart, and stay vigilant until fully vaccinated, two weeks following the second dose.
  • If you or your health care provider suspect you may have monkeypox, isolate at home. If you can, stay in a separate area from other family members and pets.
  • Follow reputable sources of health information, including NYSDOH, CDC, and your local county health department.

The San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH) also declared a local emergency to strengthen the city’s preparedness and response to the rapidly rising cases of monkeypox. This announcement happened last Friday and they reported 261 confirmed cases of monkeypox in the city.

“We need to be prepared and this declaration will allow us to serve the city better,” said Director of Health Grant Colfax, MD, said in a statement. “Our COVID-19 response has taught us that it is imperative that we mobilize city resources. The declaration helps us ensure we have all the tools available to augment our outreach, testing and treatment, especially to the LGBTQ+ who remain at highest risk for monkeypox.”

San Francisco is expected to receive 4220 doses of the monkeypox vaccine. SFDPH initially requested 35,000 doses of the monkeypox vaccine to meet the needs of people in the city. Including this latest allocation, San Francisco has received approximately 12,000 doses.

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