HIV Ireland has today welcomed the publication by the HSE of a first-phase roll out of monkeypox vaccine for some people identified as most in need. Following the announcement that current stocks of vaccine will not meet demand, HIV Ireland is calling on the Government to take urgent action to procure additional vaccine stock as the current supply falls far short of what is required to end the monkeypox outbreak in Ireland.
Welcoming today’s announcement, HIV Ireland Executive Director Mr Stephen O’Hare said, “A key component to controlling and hopefully eradicating this virus is a coordinated vaccine rollout programme for those most at risk of infection.”
“As the extent of the crisis unfolds, it will be imperative that additional vaccines are procured as soon as possible, and that more resources are made available within sexual health services to identify and contact those most at risk to offer them a vaccine at the earliest opportunity,” he added.
MPOWER programme manager with HIV Ireland, Mr Adam Shanley said “We welcome the planned vaccine rollout, but due to the limited supply, vaccines will reach less than 10% of those identified by NIAC as most in need, falling far short of what is required to bring this outbreak to an end. The longer our community is made to wait for vaccination, cases will continue to rise and anxiety among gbMSM will increase.”
“We know many gay and bisexual men are concerned about monkeypox and the slow rollout of a vaccine plan”, Mr Shanley continued. “We’ll continue to develop resources and services to support our community through this challenging time. However, it is crucial that every effort be made to procure enough vaccine to protect those at risk of acquiring monkeypox.
“Sexual health services, already overburdened, will now be required to shoulder vaccination delivery,” continued Mr Shanley.
“In order to ensure that these services can meet the urgent challenges posed by monkepox and other pressing sexual health priorities, including HIV and syphilis, increased resources must be made available,” he added.
Notes for Editors:
For more information or to arrange an interview, contact Stephen O’Hare, Executive Director, HIV Ireland, Tel. 085 7112635. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Government’s announcement of Vaccine Rollout Plan………
Information about monkeypox: mpower.hivireland.ie/monkeypox
Surveillance data on monkeypox in Ireland: https://www.hpsc.ie/a-z/zoonotic/monkeypox/
Recent community discussion on monkeypox in Ireland: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01IgKkl_TAk&feature=youtu.be