US Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra announced today that he will declare the spread of the monkeypox virus in the United States a Public Health Emergency (PHE). This action will further strengthen and accelerate the Biden-Harris Administration’s response in recognition of the rapid spread of monkeypox in the United States and globally, and signals the seriousness and urgency with which the Administration is responding. The announcement came after President Biden appointed Robert Fenton of the Federal Emergency Management Agency as the White House’s National Monkey Response Coordinator and Dr. Demetre Daskalakis of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as the White House’s Deputy National Monkey Response Coordinator.
“Ending the monkeypox outbreak is a critical priority for the Biden-Harris Administration. We are taking our response to the next level by declaring a public health emergency,” said Secretary Becerra. “With today’s declaration we can further strengthen and accelerate our response.”
“President Biden is calling on us to explore every option on the table to combat the monkey epidemic and protect communities at risk,” said White House National Monkey Response Coordinator Robert Fenton. “We are applying the lessons learned from the wars we have fought – from the COVID response to wildfires to measles, and will tackle this epidemic with the urgency this time demands.”
PHE’s declaration is in line with the work of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to explore new strategies that can help get vaccines to affected communities across the country, including using a new dose-saving approach that can increase the number of doses available, up to five times.
Public health emergencies also carry important implications for data sharing with the federal government. Fifty-one jurisdictions have signed data use agreements that will provide the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with information related to vaccine administration. Declaring an outbreak of emergency could provide justification for the remaining jurisdictions to sign the agreement. In addition, provide authority to the center for Medicare & amp; Medicaid services to collect test and hospitalization data.
To date, HHS has delivered more than 602,000 doses of the JYNNEOS vaccine to states and jurisdictions, an increase of 266,000 over the past week. HHS has provided 1.1 million doses to states and jurisdictions in total and is making more doses available as jurisdictions use up current supplies. HHS also announced today that it has expedited the delivery of 150,000 additional doses to the US next month. Dose, which was scheduled to arrive in November will now arrive in the US in September.
Today’s announcement is part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s comprehensive strategy to combat the monkey epidemic. This strategy includes significantly scaling up the production and availability of vaccines, expanding testing capacity and making testing more convenient, reducing the burden on accessing care, and conducting strong outreach to stakeholders and members of the LGBTQI + community.
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For general media inquiries, please contact media@hhs. On the same subject : HHS Strengthens National Preparedness for Health Emergencies, Announces Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response (ASPR).gov.
Content created by Assistant Secretary of Public Affairs (ASPA) Content last reviewed August 4, 2022