King County Health Officials Stress the Importance of Getting Vaccinated against Mpox

King County Health Officials Stress the Importance of Getting Vaccinated against Mpox

King County Public Health is pushing for immunizations against mpox, formerly recognized as ‘monkeypox.’

Although there are fewer instances this year than previous, health experts caution that not everyone at risk has received a vaccination.

Since May of 2022, more than 500 instances have been documented, and new cases are continually emerging.

The Director of King County Public Health’s HIV/STD clinic, Dr. Matthew Golden, said that “It caused pretty severe painful lesions in people, skin lesions, genital lesions, perirectal lesions. It was very unpleasant for the people who got infected, and we don’t want a repeat of that.”

Cisgender men who have intercourse with people of the same sex as well as transgender people who have the same sexual preferences, according to Dr. Golden, are at risk of getting mpox.

Mpox is frequently transmitted through intimate contact and close skin-to-skin contact.

Although immunizations were provided, according to Dr. Golden, not everyone has received the necessary two doses.

The expert went on to add that “About 40 percent of the population at risk have had one dose, and probably about one-quarter of the people who are at elevated risk have had two doses. We still potentially have a vulnerable population.”

Health experts advise taking complete precautions now, since pride month is already underway.

They also point out that the efficacy of the mpox vaccination after two doses ranges from 66 to 89 percent.

Dr. Golden also noted that “I think there probably is an increment of additional effectiveness. I think the other thing we don’t know is the duration of immunity, how long will you be immune if you only had one dose.”

Even if you have had the vaccine, you still run the chance of contracting mpox, but the intensity may not be as severe.

Health authorities said the mpox vaccine is now readily accessible and advise anyone at risk should get immunized as soon as possible.

Last year, it was scarce and difficult to get but things are different now so there is no real excuse when it comes to making sure you are safe.

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