Second dose of monkeypox vaccine now available in Los Angeles

With a new shipment of monkeypox vaccines expected Wednesday, Los Angeles County health officials will begin administering second doses for the first time, reopening the registry for the first shots to those deemed high-risk.

LA County Health Department officials said in a statement that the latest shipment will allow them to increase vaccine distribution, but the 5,600 new Jynneos vaccines fall short of federal officials’ promises — and still well below the amount needed is to vaccinate everyone classified as high risk.

The county also increased immunization eligibility for some children after federal officials last week approved emergency shots for those under 18.

The 5,600 vaccine vials — about a third of what LA officials expected this week — could be used to vaccinate about 28,000 people, according to the Food and Drug Administration’s recommendation to use just a fifth of a full dose to fill supplies extend .

Many cities this week expressed frustration with changes to their vaccine distribution allocations after the federal government changed strategy.

With this latest delivery, LA health officials plan to give 8,000 second doses to people who received their first shot before July 20, or four or more weeks ago. The Jynneos vaccine consists of a series of two doses taken four weeks apart.

The county had previously followed guidance from the state, which was directing health officials to prioritize first doses while supplies were limited, but said: “Second doses may be offered as more doses of Jynneos become available.”

It wasn’t immediately clear if that guidance had changed, but last week, California health director Dr. Tomás Aragón that the “emergency authorization offers more flexibility in the number of doses available”.

“We continue to expect demand to exceed supply and are currently evaluating the impact of this approval on our allocation and distribution strategy,” Aragón said.

The LA Health Department said any additional vaccines will be administered in the new lower-dose intradermal technique — which is delivered more shallowly and between layers of skin — as opposed to under the skin and into the underlying fat. However, the earlier dosing technique is used for people under the age of 18 or with a history of keloid scars, according to federal guidelines, health officials said.

Nearly 1,000 cases of monkeypox were confirmed or suspected in LA County as of Wednesday, according to the county, after a week of near-daily double-digit increases. Statewide, more than 2,300 cases have been confirmed or suspected — more than double the number two weeks ago.

Monkeypox continues to spread primarily among men or transgender people who have sex with other men, health officials said, although anyone can contract the virus regardless of gender or sexuality. Most transmissions have been through close, prolonged skin-to-skin contact, but the virus can be spread through towels or sheets, or shared respiratory secretions such as kissing or other close face-to-face contact.

The county’s online registry for a monkeypox vaccine has been closed for the past few days but opened Wednesday afternoon. People interested in a vaccine can call the Public Health Call Center at (833) 540-0473 from 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. The county said 19,000 of the smaller doses will be distributed to community providers and county vaccination centers.

To be admitted, people must meet county eligibility requirements, which give priority to gay and bisexual men or transgender people who have had multiple sex partners in the past two weeks or who meet other criteria such as being gay or gay. B. a sexually transmitted disease.

The district requires informed consent for children to receive the vaccine, and they must also meet the district’s eligibility requirements.

For those eligible for a second dose of Jynneos, county officials said they should contact their doctor when they get their first dose there, or wait for a text message from the health department for further instructions.

“Public health has received assurances from federal leadership that additional doses will be available in the coming weeks,” the department said in a statement.

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-08-17/second-dose-of-monkeypox-vaccine-now-available-in-los-angeles Second dose of monkeypox vaccine now available in Los Angeles

Russell Falcon

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