Monkeypox Update from our Infectious Diseases Team 13 Oct 2022
As you may have heard, there is an ongoing worldwide outbreak of Monkeypox (MPX) virus, inherently different from previous incursions of MPX out of Africa in that the 2022 outbreak transmission has almost exclusively occurred in sexual networks of highly affected communities, particularly men who have sex with men (MSM).
We have had recently the first cases of locally transmitted infections in Aotearoa and as expected, with accelerated testing of contacts and risk populations, the numbers are rising – therefore, the National response is quickly gaining momentum and there is now ongoing collaboration between the Health agencies, sexual health clinicians, and the affected community (Burnett Foundation).
Please refer to the attached standard operating procedure for further information on this condition and what to do if you see a suspected case.
Hopefully we will soon have news to share regarding the availability in Aotearoa of antivirals (Tecovirimat, TPOXX) and vaccines (MVA - Jynneos or Imvanex).
- Antivirals: we understand approximately 500 courses of TPOXX are being procured. The access to this limited resource will likely involve discussion and approval from a relevant Specialist (Infectious Disease or Sexual Health Physician).
- Vaccines: the global market is highly competitive and there is an international shortage of vaccines. We understand the availability of any significant stock of vaccine might be at least a couple of months away. Therefore, in the meantime, early detection, notification, and isolation of cases and close contacts is paramount