Washington: The United States is expected to declare a public health emergency to bolster the federal response to the outbreak of monkeypox that already has infected more than 6,600 Americans, Associated Press reported quoting two people familiar with the matter on Thursday. The announcement is expected to free up federal funding and resources to fight the viral infection with symptoms like fever, body aches, chills, fatigue and pimple-like bumps on many parts of the body.Also Read - Dog Tests Positive For Monkeypox Virus As WHO Issues Guidelines. Check Details Here
The declaration came at a time when Biden administration is facing criticism over the pace of vaccine availability for monkeypox. Also Read - Bharat Biotech Completes Trials for India's First Intranasal Covid Vaccine, Calls It Safe and Immunogenic
According to the report, clinics in major cities like New York and San Francisco said they haven’t received enough of the two-shot vaccine to meet demand and some have had to stop offering the second dose of the vaccine to ensure supply of first doses. Also Read - Man Rams Car Into US Capitol Barrier; Shoots Himself Later
Meanwhile, the White House said it has made more than 1.1 million doses of vaccine available and has helped to boost domestic diagnostic capacity to 80,000 tests per week.
The monkeypox virus spreads through prolonged and close skin-to-skin contact, including hugging, cuddling and kissing, as well as sharing bedding, towels and clothing. People getting sick so far have been primarily men who have sex with men. But health officials emphasize that the virus can infect anyone.
The announcement comes three days after the Biden administration named top officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to serve as the White House coordinators to combat the monkeypox outbreak.
News of the expected declaration was first reported Thursday by Politico.