The point is that they have moved incredibly slowly.
Initial criticisms were that testing for monkeypox was being handled too tightly by state health departments and the CDC, hindering people from accessing testing. A few weeks ago, the federal government allowed large commercial diagnostics providers to ramp up testing, but, even so, this slow pace of movement at the White House and administration is causing a bottleneck throughout the system.
TPOEX, the drug that can treat infections, is available under very strict scrutiny by the FDA and the federal government, requiring doctors to process several hours of paperwork to obtain the drug for a patient. And then there’s the vaccine, right?
We have a vaccine, JYNNEOS, or JYNNEOS, that is available to prevent this infection. We have the largest stockpile of this vaccine in the world, but still we have been able to distribute over 140,000 doses in the last few months.
And there are about 200,000 doses in a warehouse in Denmark. It is not very clear whether the administration knows what it is doing in terms of coordination. TPOXX treatment is a type of medical care that people need.
As your interviewers talked about in an earlier section, there’s so much physical pain that many of these men who have monkeypox, and they’re going to the hospital to get it treated, are coming with hospital bills that are their own. Put pressure on finances, they can’t pay.
It should have been set and staged six weeks ago, eight weeks ago, in early June. Now we’re hearing that we’ll have enough vaccine by Thanksgiving. From Thanksgiving? Really? What do we have 10,000, 20,000 cases in the US?
The great thing here is that we could have prevented this outbreak. We could have stopped it in its tracks. Now the possibility of it becoming endemic, taking its roots in the country is quite imminent, isn’t it? And we’ll be looking at living with monkeypox for a long time to come, not only in the gay community, but as it spreads to other communities in which close physical contact is common, from homeless shelters, prisons, potentially other types. Key Settings, Health Club.
We can deal with this on a much larger societal level.