Thursday, March 23, 2023

Former FDA Commissioner: US Probably ‘Failed to Contain’ Monkeypox

Scott Gottlieb, a former Food and Drug Administration commissioner, said the United States has likely missed an opportunity to contain the ongoing monkeypox outbreak, warning that health officials likely only detected a “fraction” of the actual number of cases.

Gottlieb made the comments Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” telling host Margaret Brennan that while monkeypox was not going to explode across the country like the coronavirus, the United States should have been able to control it with more measures. aggressive. Monkeypox, he told her, has now “become firmly embedded in the community” and is likely to persist.

“I think, at this point, we haven’t been able to contain this,” he said. “We are now on the cusp of this becoming an endemic virus, where now it becomes a persistent thing that we need to continue to deal with. I think the window to control this and contain it has probably closed. And, if it hasn’t closed, it’s certainly starting to close.”

The CDC says there have been more than 1,800 confirmed cases of monkeypox as of July 15 in nearly every US state. The virus spreads primarily through close contact with infected people or animals, and so far, cases have been identified mainly in men who have sex with men.

Gottlieb warned that the US has been making similar mistakes to contain the monkeypox outbreak as the country did at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, by not testing people early enough and by not supplying enough vaccines. to hinder the spread of the virus.

Some cities, including New York, have started vaccination drives for those at risk of the disease, but health officials have warned that many more doses are needed and that demand outstrips supply. The United States has ordered about 7 million doses, but many of them won’t arrive in the country for months.

“We are probably detecting only a fraction of the actual cases, because… we had for a long time a very narrow case definition of who got tested. And, in general, we look at the community of men who have sex with men and at STD clinics,” said Gottlieb. “But it is a fact that there are cases outside of that community right now.”

“We’re not picking them up because we’re not looking there,” he continued. “This has spread more widely in the community. I wouldn’t be surprised if there are thousands of cases right now.”

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, echoed those sentiments on Nation World News this weekend, saying the CDC figures were “most likely an undercount.”

“This is something that we definitely need to take seriously,” Fauci said. “We don’t know the scope and potential of this yet, but we have to act as if it has the ability to spread much more widely than it is spreading right now.”

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Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
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