The Maryland Department of Health and Governor Larry Hogan today updated information on monkeypox cases as well as efforts to vaccinate eligible individuals.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 129 cases of the disease have been reported in the city. This represents 2.2% of cases registered throughout the country, according to a press release.
Regarding the capacity to carry out tests, the agency indicated that they are available in commercial laboratories and in the state public health laboratory, MDH. However, the Maryland Department of Health reported that the tests are “not available for purchase on store shelves.” For this reason, the entity detailed the process to follow if a person considers that they have the virus or that they are at risk.
“People who believe they have been exposed to monkeypox or have an illness that might be monkeypox should contact their medical provider. Healthcare providers should educate patients about the home isolation while results are pending“, reads the statement.
If any resident does not have insurance or medical provider, you must access this link to contact the nearest health department.
Regarding the vaccination plan, the Maryland Department of Health stated that the federal government assigned MDH enough doses to immunize 3,202 patients with the two-dose Jynneos vaccine. However, the agency anticipates a possible delay in the delivery of more vaccines until the fall.
Currently, the health entity is prioritizing inoculation in the following groups of people.
- Known close contacts who are identified by public health through case investigation, contact tracing, and exposure risk assessments.
- Healthcare workers who may have been exposed to a known case and Laboratory Response Network (LRN) or other laboratory personnel working directly with monkeypox testing.
- Individuals who know that one of their sexual partners in the last two weeks has been diagnosed with monkeypox.
- Individuals in high-risk populations who have had group or multiple-partner sex.
- Persons who have been intimate with or whose employment is located in a defined geographic area where monkeypox transmission has been reported.
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Likewise, the MDH indicated that it seeks to ensure sustained and equitable access to vaccines in all jurisdictions based on data-driven factors despite the limited supply of vaccines at the federal level.
“Most doses have been made available to jurisdictions reporting the highest incidence of known cases and exposures. Individuals who believe they are eligible for vaccination should contact their local health department,” the agency added in a statement. written.
For his part, Governor Larry Hogan stressed that the state will do everything possible to obtain a higher dose of immunization.
“We will continue to press the federal government to provide more vaccines to the states and we will do everything possible to make resources available to people at risk,” he said.
On the other hand, the MDH in collaboration with local health departments carry out “exhaustive” follow-up for all suspected cases. Once a person who may have been exposed to monkeypox is identified, they are encouraged to get vaccinated, following CDC guidelines.
Regarding the prevention and disclosure of information, the MDH made available to the public a informational page y frequent questions with information on monkeypox. Additionally, state health officials continue to conduct direct outreach to physicians and report regularly to local health officials.