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Expert warns that monkeypox IS the next pandemic – but 'not anything like the Covid' outbreak

An expert warns that monkeypox will become the next pandemic to hit the world as the current outbreak of the virus has caused more than 30,000 cases worldwide – with about a third of infections in the United States alone, home to the largest outbreak in the world.

dr. Joseph Eisenberg, an epidemiologist at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, said in an interview that he believes the virus outbreak will become the next pandemic in the US, but not reach the same heights as COVID-19.

His comments come as the nation’s outbreak spirals out of control.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) registered a further 366 infections on Thursday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 10,758.

The increase in the number of cases and the potential for the virus to become a pandemic has left health officials confused. America faces a massive shortage of vaccines, with only about 1.1 million available.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is reportedly considering splitting shots into fifths to allow limited supplies to go further — though they’ve been criticized for the move because there’s little data to back it up.

Expert warns that monkeypox IS the next pandemic but

1660321898 148 Expert warns that monkeypox IS the next pandemic but

1660321898 148 Expert warns that monkeypox IS the next pandemic but

“Monkeypox is the next pandemic,” Eisenberg said.

“It is spreading worldwide through several countries, including the US. In the US, the number of cases is rapidly increasing to the thousands.

“However, it is a different kind of pandemic than what we see with Covid, as it is much less contagious and currently affects a specific risk group that involves very close, intimate contact. And so, yes, it’s a pandemic, but it’s not like the Covid pandemic.’

However, not everyone agrees that the situation is so serious. dr. Andrew Brouwer, an assistant researcher at Michigan’s School of Public Health, pushed back in the same interview.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has made us susceptible to disease transmission. Other outbreaks . . . received much less attention,” he said.

“That’s not to say we should let the MPV and other outbreaks fly under the radar, but we need to have some perspective that outbreaks of various diseases are constantly occurring and not all are existential threats.”

However, Brouwer thinks that the increased attention to the virus will help fight the virus, making the average more aware of its spread and how to recognize a possible case.

The virus has spread rapidly to start the new month. More than half of the 10,758 total confirmed cases in the US -5,569 – have been discovered in the past 11 days alone.

More than a fifth of U.S. cases are in New York, where 2,187 cases have been confirmed. The Big Apple, in particular, has emerged as the nation’s biggest monkeypox hotspot — much like it did at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

California (1,892 cases of monkeypox confirmed) and Florida (1053) are the only other states to have recorded more than 1,000 cases each.

The virus has been detected in 49 states and the District of Columbia, with Wyoming the only state still at zero.

The number of cases has risen in recent weeks, probably for several reasons. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has significantly expanded testing efforts — allowing the country to test about 80,000 people each week.

Americans are also now more aware of monkey pox, and a person experiencing symptoms is more likely to seek medical attention. Doctors are also more vigilant about getting someone with symptoms tested.

1660321898 731 Expert warns that monkeypox IS the next pandemic but

1660321898 731 Expert warns that monkeypox IS the next pandemic but

But there are also fears that the virus is spreading rampant to the point where it can no longer be contained – especially as more cases are breaking out outside of gay and bisexual men, who initially made up almost every infection.

However, officials appear to have been caught off guard by this outbreak, leading to an initial shortage of testing and a lack of vaccines, which are still hampering the response.

When jabs became available in major population centers like New York City, appointments were fulfilled within minutes due to exceptionally high demand.

To quell the shortage of the Jynneos monkeypox vaccine, federal officials plan to release doses of the vaccine as low as 0.1 milliliters (ml) — a huge drop from the standard 0.5 ml dose.

They believe that using an intradermal injection — which delivers the vaccine between the layers of skin rather than under the skin’s fat — will ensure that the injection is just as effective.

But there are some questions about whether this is the right move.

In 2015, researchers found that smallpox vaccines were just as effective when given in smaller doses when the injection was done intradermally.

Former FDA chief Dr.  Scott Gottlieb (pictured) told CBS' Face the Nation that access to monkeypox tests and vaccines would need to be expanded to control the current outbreak

Former FDA chief Dr.  Scott Gottlieb (pictured) told CBS' Face the Nation that access to monkeypox tests and vaccines would need to be expanded to control the current outbreak

Former FDA chief Dr. Scott Gottlieb (pictured) told CBS’ Face the Nation that access to monkeypox tests and vaccines would need to be expanded to control the current outbreak

However, it was only one study that was conducted in 524 participants and used a different vaccine.

Paul Chaplin, CEO of Jynneos’ manufacturer Bavariant Nordic, released an open letter to Dr. Xavier Becerra, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services and Dr. Robert Califf, Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, expressing concern about the lack of data to support the plan.

The Danish pharmaceutical giant is calling for more trials on the effectiveness of the smaller doses before the country revises its vaccine strategy.

Currently, injections are mainly reserved for men who have sex with other men – although some exposed people have received the injection as a precaution.

Access to the recordings may need to be expanded soon. Some officials fear the virus has already escaped that sexual network and is now in other groups as well.

“There’s an opportunity to get this back in the box, but it’s going to be very difficult at this point,” FDA Molded Chief Executive Dr Scott Gottlieb told CBS’ Face the Nation last weekend.

“We continue to look for cases in the community of men having sex with men, it’s mainly spreading in that community, but there’s no doubt it’s spread beyond that community at this point and I think we need to look for it.” broader to cases.’

Gottlieb said any person with an atypical case of shingles or herpes should be tested for monkey pox at this point.

Expanding testing will either find more cases — giving officials more information they can use to control the outbreak — or confirm more people as negative and confirm areas where the virus is not spreading.

He also believes the CDC should start monitoring the wastewater — which can provide more general pictures of where the virus is spreading without individual testing.

Despite his concerns, Gottlieb doesn’t think the virus has reached a point where the average American should be concerned.

“I don’t think this is something people generally need to worry about,” he explained.

“I think the incidence of this infection in the wider community is still very low. Your risk of contacting monkeypox is still extremely low outside of certain social networks where you see a higher number of cases.

“If you want to contain it … we have to look more broadly.”

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