Friday, August 5, 2022

NMAC Statement on Monkeypox Federal Public Health Emergency

Following is a statement from NMAC Executive Director Paul Kawata on the federal declaration of a public health emergency on the spreading Monkeypox epidemic.  

“This declaration of a national emergency on Monkeypox is a good first step from the federal government. This declaration will allow federal agencies to prioritize resources to provide vaccinations and outreach for those at risk of infection.”  

“However, it is only a first step and there are many questions that must be answered. How will vaccinations be rolled out? How will the federal government ensure not just access to vaccinations but equity in that access? When will the CDC recommend that all gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men get vaccinated? How will they make that happen, given issues of stigma and vaccine hesitancy? And how can this be done in the current political climate without further stigmatizing the LGBTQ community?”

“Immediate clarity must be provided beyond this federal declaration. Making a declaration of an emergency is an easy step. The hard part starts now. How do we make this all happen?”