Los Angeles County moves to declare local emergency over monkeypox

A day after California declared a state of emergency over a growing monkeypox outbreak, the chairman of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors declared a local emergency over the disease.

According to a news release, Holly J. Mitchell issued the emergency statement early Tuesday to “amplify the county’s response to this outbreak.”

Monkeypox cases in LA County have more than doubled in the past 10 days, rising to 400 on Monday, according to the county health department’s count of confirmed and suspected cases. The majority of cases have been confirmed in men who identify as part of the LGBTQ community, according to county statistics.

The outbreak in California — and around the world — continues to disproportionately affect men who have sex with men, as well as transgender and non-binary people, although anyone can get the virus through close skin contact or through substances that have touched the virus Virus. On Thursday, San Francisco declared a state of emergency as cases continue to spread there.

There is an approved and effective vaccine that can be used preventively or after exposure, although it remains in short supply. The lack of availability has led to growing frustration and long waiting lists for admission, particularly among LGBTQ communities who remain most vulnerable.

“This proclamation is critical to helping us stay ahead of this virus,” Mitchell said in a statement. “By declaring a local emergency, we can cut red tape to better utilize resources and educate residents on how to protect themselves and help stop the spread. It will also allow the district to quickly roll out vaccines as more become available and make the necessary efforts to source supplies and improve outreach and awareness.”

The board will vote later Tuesday morning to ratify the proclamation.

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-08-02/los-angeles-county-declares-local-emergency-over-monkeypox Los Angeles County moves to declare local emergency over monkeypox

Russell Falcon

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