The government announced the expansion of vaccination against monkeypox on Friday July 8, after an opinion from the High Authority for Health (HAS) to this effect.
“Faced with the spread of the Monkeypox virus, the kinetics of the epidemic and the difficulties of tracing the contacts of infected people”, the High Authority for Health (HAS) recommended on Friday to extend vaccination against monkeypox to be able to administer it preventively to those most at risk “because of their sexual practices or their profession”according to a press release. “This opinion will be followed”reacted shortly after Jérôme Salomon, director general of health, during a press briefing.
Are concerned “men who have sex with men and trans people who have multiple partners, people in a situation of prostitution, professionals working in places of sexual consumption”said the HAS.
The new categories eligible for preventive vaccination “will be able to start making appointments next week if they wish”assured Jérôme Salomon. “A dozen sites in Ile-de-France” will offer it, said Cécile Somaribba, director of health monitoring and safety at the Ile-de-France regional health agency.
Marketed under the name Imvanex in Europe, the vaccine used is a third-generation vaccine (non-replicating live vaccine, i.e. one that does not replicate in the human body), authorized in Europe since 2013 and indicated against smallpox in adults. “We are now in a position to meet the needs of the centers in the coming weeks”said Jérôme Salomon, not mentioning “difficulties in accessing this vaccine”.
Five hundred and seventy-seven cases in France
In France, according to the latest figures, as of July 5, 577 cases have been confirmed, including 387 in Ile-de-France. These cases occurred mainly in men, and when this information is provided, especially in men who have sex with men, or who have had several partners in the weeks preceding their symptoms.
At this stage, HAS does not recommend the preventive vaccination of healthcare professionals caring for patients, considering that the usual hygiene measures and the wearing of personal protective equipment make “the very low risk of contamination in practice”. However, this vaccination can be considered “on a case-by-case basis, depending on the exposure, the existence of individual risk factors or [la] request “she added.
Until then, the High Authority for Health recommended vaccinating adults, including health professionals, who had risky contact with a patient. It had been seized at the end of last week by the Ministry of Health in order to determine to which populations to extend vaccination to limit the risk of contamination towards people likely to be exposed to the virus.
LGBT + associations, certain health professionals, and, more recently, left-wing parties, had asked the ministry about an extension to men who have sex with other men.
Also listen Monkey pox: towards a new health crisis?