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Fayette Health Dept to get monkeypox vaccine soon

Stu Johnson

The Fayette County Health Department expects to receive the vaccine for monkeypox in the coming days. The Lexington health agency is one of five sites in Kentucky as part of the state’s distribution plan from the strategic national stockpile. Health Department Interim Chief Administrative Officer Jessica Cobb said these doses are for high-risk individuals following exposure.

“This is not the preventive vaccine at this point. We hope in coming months to be allocated more doses so that we can expand the availability of that beyond just vaccinating high-risk contacts,” said Cobb.

Cobb said the high-risk population includes men having sex with men and those who have anonymous sex. Symptoms include a rash, fever, and muscle aches. She says there are typically no long-term complications, and the viral disease is rarely fatal.

For now, Cobb noted these doses will only go to high-risk individuals who have been exposed to the virus.

“You any disease that we can stop from spreading, we absolutely want to do that. So, that’s why we’re taking the case investigation and contact tracing and treatment of contacts so seriously,” said Cobb.

Cobb said the entire state is only receiving 300 doses initially from the strategic national stockpile. She noted that’s why it’s targeted to the high-risk population post-exposure.

Cobb added a larger shipment of vaccines could be used in a preventive way at some point.

Three cases of monkeypox were reported this week in Louisville.

Stu has been reporting for WEKU for more than 35 years. His primary beat is Lexington/Fayette government.
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