Italy started its vaccination drive against Monkeypox on Monday, August 8, 2022, in light of the increased number of cases. The increase in monkeypox infections has come at a time when health authorities worldwide are reporting vaccine shortages.
According to the Italian Health Ministry, the country has reported 545 cases of monkeypox so far. The vaccination campaign in Italy started more than a month after other countries, which have seen comparatively higher cases, including the United States, Britain and Spain.
The hospital said that the first vaccination doses would be administered at the Spallanzani hospital in Rome.
Spallanzani has stated that it has two hundred (200) people who will start getting their vaccination shots from Monday onwards, adding that they already have 600 requests for bookings.
Jynneos (MVA-BN), a smallpox vaccine made by Bavarian Nordic, will be used as a vaccine for monkeypox. The European Medicines Agency approves this vaccine for protection against monkeypox.
On Thursday, the administration of vaccinations will also begin in Milan, which is often referred to as Italy’s Financial Capital
The virus is being transmitted mainly among gay and bisexual men in the current outbreak, which began in May. Monkeypox is primarily spread through close contact. It causes pus-filled sores and flu-like symptoms.
According to a Reuter’s tracker, twenty-six thousand and five hundred (26,500) cases have been reported worldwide. These numbers were reported outside the countries where it usually spreads.
In July, World Health Organization (WHO) declared monkeypox a “public health emergency of international concern”, which is the institution’s highest alert level.
Following WHO’s declaration, the United States also declared monkeypox a public health emergency on August 4. The US has the most number of Monkey-Pox cases worldwide.
The Health Ministry said that gay, bisexual men and transgender people who have recently had sexual contact with multiple partners, recently had a sexually transmitted infection or used chemical drugs when having sex would be eligible for the vaccine. Hospital staff dealing with monkeypox cases are also eligible.
The first case in Italy was recorded on May 20, 2022. There are no current plans for mass vaccinations.