HOUSTON, Texas – New York City Mayor Eric Adams issued a state of emergency on Monday as the monkeypox outbreak continues to infiltrate the largest US city.
"New York City now has over 1,200 reported cases, approximately 25 percent of cases nationally, and we are continuing to see the numbers rise," Adams said in a statement.
With over 5,000 confirmed monkeypox cases across the US, NYC is now a hotbed for monkeypox, while city health officials estimate that as many as 150,000 residents could be at risk for infection.
"This order will bolster our existing efforts to educate, vaccinate, test, and treat as many New Yorkers as possible and ensure a whole-of-government response to this outbreak," Adams added.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul issued an executive order over the weekend declaring the monkeypox outbreak a disaster across the entire state.
However, New York City's emergency executive order allows Adams "to suspend local laws, and enact rules, as necessary, to protect the well-being and health of all New Yorkers" as well as "to protect public health and slow the spread."
The World Health Organization declared monkeypox a global health emergency on July 23.
Since May, there have been more than 20,000 reported cases of the virus in nearly 80 countries.
The US Department of Health and Human Services announced late last week that more than 1.1 million doses of the Jynneos monkeypox vaccine have been given out to states most in need and that 60,000 to 80,000 monkeypox tests can be conducted in the US per week.
Health officials said monkeypox is predominantly spread through male-to-male sexual contact and can be spread through skin-to-skin contact, as well as sharing bedding, towels, and clothing.
Symptoms of the virus include a rash, malaise, fever, and swollen lymph nodes, in addition to chills, headaches, and muscle pain.
The federal government has already purchased an additional 5.5 million doses of the Jynneos vaccine, which will be ready for distribution in 2023.
The US also has access to another 11.1 million vaccine doses if needed to combat the monkeypox outbreak. (Anadolu)