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Health officials in New York and California have sounded the alarm over the spread of the monkeypox virus, declaring it a public health threat.
In San Francisco, London Mayor London Breed said the city will declare a local health emergency effective August 1.
“This virus affects everyone, but our LGBTQ community is seeing serious cases and we need to take action, we need more vaccines,” he tweeted.
In a blog post, the mayor also said the city’s Latino community makes up 30% of its cases “even though Latinos are only 15%. [its] population”.
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“The most important need right now is more vaccines. The federal government distributes vaccine to state health departments, and then the California Department of Public Health distributes it to counties like San Francisco. We have no control over the amount of vaccine we receive,” he said. “San Francisco needs more support and we need to do more. That’s why we’re declaring a local state of emergency.”
The emergency order takes effect Monday and must be approved by the board of supervisors within a week.
San Francisco now has more than 280 confirmed cases, according to NBC Bay Area.
Health officials expect the number to rise in the coming weeks.
The move comes as the Biden administration considers declaring a public health emergency over the monkeypox in the coming days.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are now more than 4,900 confirmed cases of monkeypox and orthopoxvirus in the United States.
California accounts for about 800 of those cases, but New York has more than 1,200.
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On Thursday, the Empire State’s health commissioner declared monkeypox a “dangerous threat to public health.”
“Based on the continued spread of this virus, which is multiplying rapidly and primarily affects communities defined as men who have sex with men, and the need for local jurisdictions to administer vaccines, I have declared monkeypox a national public health threat. New York State,” Health State Commissioner for Conservation Dr. Mary T. Bassett in a statement. “This declaration means that local health departments involved in response and prevention activities can receive additional state reimbursement after other federal and state funding sources are maximized to protect all New Yorkers and ultimately limit the spread of monkeypox in our communities.”
On Thursday, the governor of New York. According to Kathy Hochul, 110.00 doses of the monkeypox vaccine have been secured for the state and will be delivered in the next four to six weeks.
“With more than a quarter of all cases in the United States, New Yorkers, and our LGBTQ+ community in particular, continue to be among the hardest hit,” the governor added. “We will continue to advocate for the federal government’s fair share of vaccines based on the burden of disease affecting New York.”
Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra announced Thursday that an additional 786,000 doses of the vaccine will be distributed nationwide.
“Our goal is to prevent this virus and stop this epidemic. We have a strategy to protect those at risk and limit the spread of this additional vaccine dose, while also working with states to ensure equitable distribution,” he said. These vaccines are the result of years of federal investment and planning.”
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During the call, Becerra told reporters the same day that the Biden administration “believes we’ve done everything we can at the federal level … to work with state and local partners and the communities that are affected so we can move forward and stop this epidemic.” .”
Fox News’ Louis Casiano and The Associated Press contributed to this report.