Starting Monday, Massachusetts health care providers will prioritize the first dose of the monkeypox vaccine due to a very limited national supply.
The new strategy aims to cover as many eligible patients as possible in the event of a dose shortage. Although the vaccine, Jynneos, is approved as a two-dose series, the state Department of Public Health (DPH) recommends that providers limit the dose to one until further notice to ensure the number are protected. maximum of people.
Dr. Paul Biddinger, head of preparedness and continuity at Mass General Brigham, says the new strategy will double the number of Massachusetts patients who can be treated with the vaccine.
“The good news is that there is really good data out there that indicates that a single-dose strategy provides highly effective protection and long-lasting, continuous protection,” Dr. Biddinger told Boston.com.
As of Thursday, there were 42 new cases of monkeypox in Massachusetts since the previous week, bringing the total to 157 residents. The first case was reported on May 18. Health officials say the new cases were all in adult men.
“What we are seeing, unfortunately, is a continued increase in the number of monkeypox cases in the Commonwealth, as well as across the country,” Biddinger said. “We know that the number of vaccine doses available is limited. But the vaccine is very effective in protecting people at high risk and post-exposure prophylaxis. People who receive a first dose are really well protected.
DPH officials sent a message to vaccine providers on Friday alerting them to the change in guidance, NBC Boston reported.
According to an update on the state’s website, people who have already scheduled appointments for the second dose will receive them, but no new appointments for the second dose will be scheduled until d other doses are available.
Fourteen health care providers and sites across the state currently offer monkeypox vaccines. On Thursday, 5,875 doses of Jynneos were administered in Massachusetts.
Other states that have adopted a first-dose prioritization strategy include Rhode Island, Connecticut, California, Michigan, and Washington, D.C. Chicago and Philadelphia have taken similar steps.
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