UPDATED 12:01 PM PT – Monday, July 25, 2022
The White House agreed with the World Health Organization’s decision to declare the spread of Monkeypox a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. They expressed that it is a “call to action.” In a statement Saturday, the Director of the White House Pandemic Preparedness Office Raj Panjabi claimed that an international response was essential to stop the spread. The World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus made the decision to declare the PHEIC after two separate deliberations with an emergency committee.
“A coordinated, international response is essential to stop the spread of Monkeypox,” Panjabi said. “It will protect communities at greatest risk of contracting the disease and combat the current outbreak.”
With the tools we have right now, we can stop #monkeypox transmission and bring this outbreak under control. It’s essential that all countries work closely with affected communities to adopt measures that protect their health, human rights and dignity.pic.twitter.com/DqyvRtB8w2
— Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (@DrTedros) July 23, 2022
According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as of Friday there are close to 2,900 cases of Monkeypox that have been reported in the US. The states with the highest case counts are in New York, California, Florida, Illinois and Georgia. More than 16,000 cases have been reported in 75 countries and territories.
“So in short, we have an outbreak that has spread around the world rapidly through new modes of transmission about which we understand too little and which meets the criteria in the international health regulations,” he voiced.
The White House also maintained that the current administration has implemented a complex strategy to combat Monkeypox outbreaks in the US. They are dramatically scaling the procurement, distribution and production of vaccines.
Today, OSTP released the Monkeypox Research Priorities to accelerate operational research and evidence to strengthen the ongoing global monkeypox outbreak response. https://t.co/VuwhaqDxHD
— White House Office of Science & Technology Policy (@WHOSTP) July 21, 2022
The Department of Health and Human Services announced earlier this month another 144,000 doses of the Jynneos vaccine would be distributed in addition to the more than 41,000 doses given out already to combat the virus, which is generally spread through contact directly with body fluids, rashes and scabs and prolonged face-to-face contact.