The Biden-Harris Administration announced this week a plan to increase the number of monkeypox vaccines available by up to five times because of an “alternative dosing regimen,”according to a news release.
“The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced it is granting Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the JYNNEOS vaccine to be administered intradermally,” the news release said. “Because intradermal administration requires a smaller dose, this change allows the number of available doses to increase by as much as five-fold while continuing to ensure the vaccine meets high standards for safety and quality.
“The EUA now allows for 0.1 ml of the JYNNEOS vaccine to be administered between layers of the skin (intradermally), as opposed to 0.5 ml of the vaccine that is administered under the skin (subcutaneously). Data from a 2015 clinical study of the JYNNEOS vaccine prior to its approval … demonstrated that a fifth of the dose, when given intradermally on the same two-dose schedule as currently administered, produced an immune response that was similar to subcutaneous dosing – meaning individuals in both groups responded to vaccination in a similar way.”
The news release said that for jurisdictions that administered 90 percent of their current vaccine supply, they could request additional doses sooner than they were planned to receive them, which was planned to start on August 15.
Highland County Health Commissioner Jared Warner recently gave the a local update on monkeypox on the health department’s Facebook page. His message included the following:
“Monkeypox continues to make headlines in Ohio and across the nation, and we have gotten a few phone calls and questions about it.”
He said monkeypox is very different than COVID, and is not easy to pass person-to-person. Transmission requires:
• Direct contact with the infectious rash, scabs, or body fluids;
• Respiratory secretions during prolonged, face-to-face contact, or during intimate physical contact, such as kissing, cuddling, or sex;
• Touching items (such as clothing or linens) that previously touched the infectious rash or body fluids;
• Pregnant people can spread the virus to their fetus through the placenta.
“There is a lot of discussion currently around treatment and prevention for monkeypox. Treatment specifically for the disease does not exist, but there seems to be some benefit from other pox virus treatments,” Warner wrote. “There are 2 vaccine types currently available for prevention and post exposure use in the US. Both are in short supply, especially as Ohio is far behind many states in case numbers.
“For most people, monkeypox is a mild illness that causes flu like symptoms and a pox like rash. Fatalities are very rare… Mostly monkeypox makes people just feel miserable for a while. From anecdotal reports, the level of discomfort depends a lot on the location of the rash.”
“Local health departments in Ohio are working closely with our community and our local medical partners to watch for this virus…”
On Aug. 4, United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra announced a Public Health Emergency (PHE) due to the spread of the monkeypox virus.
“Ending the monkeypox outbreak is a critical priority for the Biden-Harris Administration. We are taking our response to the next level by declaring a public health emergency,” Becerra said. “With today’s declaration, we can further strengthen and accelerate our response further.”
Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.