Biden admin is considering naming monkeypox a public health emergency

Fox News reports that the Biden administration is could be on the verge of declaring monkeypox to be a public health emergency. 

The reporting originates from Politico, which got the information from sources familiar with the matter. According to these sources, the Biden administration could make the decision by the end of this week.

Xavier Becerra, the head of the Department of Health and Human Service (HHS), is expected to hold a press conference on the monkeypox outbreak on Thursday morning. And so, it is possible that the declaration could be made then.

The declaration of monkeypox to be a public health emergency would do several things including allocating additional funds and staff to address the problem.

The WHO already did so

The World Health Organization (WHO), just last weekend, declared monkeypox to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).

WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus explained the decision in a virtual press conference that was held on Saturday.

According to Tedros, central in the WHO’s decision-making was the fact that monkeypox has only continued to spread. The illness has now been recorded in at least 75 countries. This includes the United States which has seen over 4,600 cases.

That being said, the WHO has only listed Europe as being at high risk of monkeypox spread. The WHO has put everyone else at a moderate risk.

Tedros: it “can be stopped”

During the press conference, Tedros also made it clear that the WHO believes that mankind already possesses the resources to “stop transmission and bring this [monkeypox] outbreak under control.”

This is because of the nature of the illness. It is mainly spread via skin-on-sin contact. Tedros explained:

Although I am declaring a public health emergency of international concern, for the moment this is an outbreak that is concentrated among men who have sex with men, especially those with multiple sexual partners. That means that this is an outbreak that can be stopped with the right strategies in the right groups.

The “right strategies,” according to Tedros, include raising awareness about the illness and implementing health measures to reduce the risk of the illness’s spread.

We should learn more about the direction that the Biden administration plans to take on Thursday when Becerra holds his press conference.

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