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Preventive vaccination against monkeypox: ‘Give a vaccine at risk’

It is currently being considered whether additional measures are needed to control the monkeypox virus outbreak. That’s what infectious disease control doctor Hanna Bos of Soa Aids Nederland says. “That could be done by using vaccination for the groups most at risk.”

According to Bos, vaccination is often the best strategy to prevent serious illness and the spread of the virus. “But another option is to treat people who have been in contact with ‘monkeypox’ directly with virus inhibitors so that they do not become (seriously) ill. That could also be a good and effective strategy,” says the doctor.

In the Netherlands, vaccinations are already offered after high-risk contact. “After an infection you can vaccinate against monkey pox. That is because it takes quite a long time before you develop symptoms with an infection,” says virologist Marion Koopmans.

Not yet elusive

The Netherlands has about 100,000 vaccines against the virus. Those are on the shelf for a possible smallpox outbreak. But this does not yet provide preventive vaccinations against the monkeypox virus. That is not yet the case elsewhere in Europe.

“Up to now there is an explanation where people have contracted it. The GGDs are busy with it and are on top of it: where did the infection contract?” Koopmans explains. “Only when it becomes a bit more elusive, do you have to see if you can vaccinate more widely.”

See also  Monkey pox: Monkeys poisoned by Brazilians for fear that they are the cause of the virus

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