BREAKING: UK to run out of monkeypox vaccine doses by the end of next week

BREAKING: UK to run out of monkeypox vaccine doses by the end of next week

Doses of the vaccine for monkeypox are set to run out by the end of next week, the body responsible for its roll-out has admitted.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said that 27,000 people have been vaccinated against the virus in England, but supplies are likely to run dry for several weeks due to supply chain issues.

It is trying to “expedite delivery” of a further 100,000 doses by September, currently not due until the end of the month.

Some of the busiest sexual health clinics in the country say stocks are already running out and refusing new appointments.

Solent sexual health, in Hampshire, said: “Due to national supply issues we are currently unable to obtain any monkeypox vaccine.”

Meanwhile, a clinic run by Chelsea and Westminster NHS Trust said that it would not accept any new appointments.

10HB said: “Due to ongoing supply issues we are unable book any further monkeypox vaccine appointments for the time being.”

The virus, which has been declared a public health emergency in the US, is passed on by close physical contact, and is particularly spreading among men who have sex with men. Men at the most risk, such as those with multiple male sexual partners or visit gay saunas, are eligible for the jab, but many have complained of issues and a postcode lottery in actually finding doses.

Dr Claire Dewsnap of the British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) said: “We have been advised that the next currently planned delivery of vaccine won’t be available until late September.

“BASHH is concerned about the time it will take to receive more vaccines and will continue to work hard with national agencies to make sure the next round of delivery is as smooth as possible.”

Dr Jenny Harries, chief executive of UKHSA, said the vaccine roll-out had “strengthened our response to the current outbreak and should interrupt chains of transmission”.

She added: “The most important way to protect those who are more likely to get monkeypox and to limit the outbreak is to ensure that all the vaccines available to us are in people’s arms as quickly as possible and are building protection across the community.”

A memo to UKHSA staff, seen by the BBC, is understood to show the body will hold back some doses to give to people who have already been exposed to monkeypox.

There have been 3,017 cases in total across the UK with signs that the spread of monkeypox is slowing. iNews reports.

The latest data show 29 cases a day confirmed on average, compared to 52 cases a day during the last week in June. No deaths have been recorded in the UK.

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