[adrotate banner="3"]

Montreal Almost Free From Monkeypox, Officials Credit Vaccine Campaign

Montreal has almost eradicated monkeypox and health officials are “cautiously optimistic” about the current situation. The city was once the epicenter of the virus outbreak but a quick vaccination campaign and dedicated health officials has allowed it to control the outbreak.

Dr. Geneviève Bergeron of Montreal public health said in a recent interview, “We’ve definitely seen a large decrease in the last few weeks. At this point, the latest cases that we have began their illness in late September.” She added that she’s “cautiously optimistic” and that it would be a little premature to declare victory.

Dr. Réjean Thomas, the president of a clinic in Montreal’s Village district, noted that they’re seeing almost no new cases as compared to almost a dozen people a day coming in thinking they had the disease. Since the first case was detected back in May, this clinic has treated 125 people with monkeypox which is more than 25 percent of all the cases in the city.

Doctors and members of the city’s LGTBQ community have credited the quick work on launching the vaccination campaign and how public health officials collaborated with community organizations. This combined effort helped Montreal control the monkeypox outbreak.

However, there is still a concern about the longevity of the protection granted by Imvamune. Thomas noted that he recently saw a patient with monkeypox who had been vaccinated against it in July. Imvamune is a smallpox vaccine that was approved for use against monkeypox. It is available to anyone who thinks they might have been exposed or those whose sexual contacts may put them at higher risk.

Furthermore, public health officials are recommending a second shot of the vaccine for those who already got the initial dose. “We know that one dose offers good protection, a second dose offers even better protection,” they reportedly said. Notably, in Quebec, 6,000 people got a second dose of the monkeypox vaccine and till now, about 30,000 people have received one dose of the vaccine.

Monkeypox cases in Canada, the United Kingdom, and Italy came down by over 50 percent in the last week of October. France and the United States have also seen reduced numbers but not as much. On the other hand, the number of cases in parts of Europe, and Central and South America are rising. It would be too early to celebrate at this point as cases can still be brought over by tourists and other visitors.

Vineet Washington

monkeypoxmonkeypox vaccineMONTREALoutbreaksecond dosevaccine