NEW YORK (PIX11) — New York Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett declared monkeypox an imminent threat to public health on Thursday.
There were 1,341 confirmed orthopoxvirus/monkeypox cases in the state as of Thursday, according to the Health Department. Most of the cases are in New York City.
“This declaration means that local health departments engaged in response and prevention activities will be able to access additional State reimbursement, after other Federal and State funding sources are maximized, to protect all New Yorkers and ultimately limit the spread of monkeypox in our communities,” Bassett said.
New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan on Wednesday described the five boroughs as being at the “epicenter of this outbreak.” Vasan called on the federal government to send additional vaccination supplies to New York City.
The World Health Organization recently said the expanding monkeypox outbreak qualifies as a global emergency. Monkeypox cases have been identified in more than 70 countries.