Advisers suggest that even after an outbreak has ended, high-risk men should continue to receive Mpox vaccinations.

The government health advisers recommended on Wednesday that gay and bisexual men who are at a high risk for mpox infection should receive the virus vaccine, even after the current outbreak has ended.

The committee’s suggestion will be forwarded to the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and if approved, will be distributed as guidance to American physicians.

Last year, there were over 30,000 cases of mpox reported in the United States. However, this year, the number has significantly decreased to approximately 800 cases. According to the CDC, even a single case is considered an outbreak because the virus does not typically circulate in the U.S.

Mpox, previously known as monkeypox, is a disease caused by a virus from the same family as the one that causes smallpox. It is prevalent in certain parts of Africa, where individuals have contracted it through bites from rodents or small animals.

The virus was previously not believed to be highly transmissible between individuals, but there was a significant increase in cases during the spring and summer of 2022 in Europe and the U.S., particularly among men who engage in sexual activity with other men. While fatalities were infrequent, numerous individuals experienced prolonged discomfort due to skin lesions.

The two-dose vaccine, known as Jynneos, has become a crucial tool in the United States. It is primarily recommended for males who engage in sexual activity with other males, have multiple sexual partners, recently had a sexually transmitted disease, or are at a heightened risk for infections transmitted through sexual contact.

According to CDC officials, approximately 500,000 individuals in the United States have received the recommended two doses of the vaccine, which is approximately one quarter of the eligible 2 million individuals.

CDC officials stated that the updated recommendation may act as a reminder to individuals that the virus remains a threat and that they can contract it while traveling internationally.

According to CDC officials, the average daily number of new cases in the U.S. is between one and four. However, there may be individuals who are not being diagnosed. In September, two deaths were reported, bringing the total number of deaths in the U.S. since the outbreak of mpox last year to 54.

In the previous year, San Francisco reported more than 800 cases. However, in the first half of this year, the average number of cases decreased significantly to only one per month. The number of cases increased to seven in August, 20 in the previous month, and at least 10 in the current month.

Dr. Stephanie Cohen, in charge of STD prevention at the San Francisco health department, stated that the current situation is significantly improved compared to last summer. However, there are still a higher number of cases than ideal.


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