OSDH Explains Why Monkeypox Vaccines Are Not Used As Preventative Measure

Thursday, August 4th 2022, 4:34 pm


The Oklahoma State Department of Health said there are now 11 confirmed monkeypox cases in Oklahoma.

The health department says they are following CDC guidelines, meaning the monkeypox vaccine can only be given after someone has been exposed to the virus

There have been more than 6,000 confirmed monkeypox cases across the country, and 11 of those patients are here in Oklahoma. Tulsa Health Department Epidemiology Supervisor Madison Thomas says Even with the rising case numbers, right now there is no reason to worry.

“It is actually the largest outbreak that has occurred outside of those endemic areas to date,” Thomas said. But the risk is low unless you’ve had that close to close skin contact with someone who has monkeypox stay educated be aware of what the current situation is and what the recommendations are.”

OSDH says monkeypox vaccines are kept readily available in small quantities but are only used in instances when someone contracts the virus and are not used preventatively. CDC's guidelines indicate the vaccine can only be given after someone is exposed to the virus.

The federal government has allocated more than 1,400 doses of the vaccine for Oklahoma, but health department leaders say that "even though our allocation increased, Oklahoma must still meet certain criteria to request doses from our allocation."

But today the Biden administration also started exploring new methods of administering the vaccine to expand availability.

“We’re prepared to take our response to the next level in addressing this virus and we urge every American to take monkeypox seriously and to take responsibility to help us tackle this virus.” Xavier Becerra with the Dept. of Health and Human Services said.

If you suspect you have been exposed to the virus, Thomas says to contact your healthcare provider.

The state health department says if you’re infected with monkeypox, the vaccine can be made available within 48 hours of a positive test.

More information on monkeypox can be found at TulsaHealth.org


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