The governors of California and Illinois on Monday declared states of emergency in an effort to bolster their responses to the monkeypox outbreak.

California, Illinois declare states of emergency over monkeypox

California, the most populous state in the United States, had recorded 827 monkeypox cases as of Monday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention second to New York, which had recorded 1,390 cases as of Monday and last week declared a public health emergency. Illinois had recorded 520 cases. The nationwide tally is more than 5,800. The declaration by California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) allows emergency medical services workers to administer the monkeypox vaccine, as pharmacists had also recently been permitted to do, Newsom said in a statement. “It is critical to maximize the number of personnel who can administer vaccines within this outreach effort,” he wrote in the emergency declaration. “Expanding the pool of eligible vaccinators will substantially aid current efforts and support anticipated further vaccination efforts upon receipt of additional doses from the federal government.”

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) said in a statement that the effort to prevent the spread of the virus “requires the full mobilization of all available public health resources.” He said he was declaring a state of emergency “to expand the resources and coordination efforts of state agencies in responding to, treating, and preventing the spread” of monkeypox. With a “limited supply” of vaccines from the federal government, California is distributing vaccines to local health authorities “based on a formula that considers [the area’s] current monkeypox cases and number of high-risk individuals,” according to the declaration. California has received more than 61,000 doses of the vaccine, according to Newsom’s office.

“We’ll continue to work with the federal government to secure more vaccines, raise awareness about reducing risk, and stand with the LGBTQ community fighting stigmatization,” Newsom said. Outbreaks have so far been overwhelmingly concentrated in men who have sex with men, though anyone can contract the virus. Advocates have urged officials to avoid repeating the mistakes of the AIDS crisis, when the virus’s devastating effects on the gay community were minimized There are increasing concerns about the federal supply of monkeypox vaccines. The United States recently received hundreds of thousands of additional doses, but is not expected to receive another shipment until October at the earliest with cases expected to continue multiplying until then amid a dwindling supply of shots.

Source: This news is originally published by washingtonpost

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