Long Island to Open More Monkeypox Vaccine Appointments

monkeypox vaccine
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Nassau and Suffolk counties have each received another batch of monkeypox vaccines and will open more appointments for eligible residents to get vaccinated against the viral infection.

The New York State Department of Health has allotted an additional 1,000 doses to Nassau County and 1,800 to Suffolk. According to state data, there are three confirmed monkeypox cases in Nassau and five in Suffolk.

“We continue to work with our federal partners to advocate for the vaccine supply New York needs as we ensure New York’s healthcare providers and local county health departments have the guidance, resources, and infrastructure they need,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett. “New Yorkers should stay informed about monkeypox, including symptoms – such as common rashes – how the virus spreads, and what to do following exposure. If you have a rash, learn about treatment on our website and contact a healthcare provider.” 

In Nassau, Northwell Health is holding pop-up distribution sites, and residents should check its vaccination portal for appointments. Nassau University Medical Center is also offering the vaccine, according to the Nassau County website.

In Suffolk, Northwell Health and Stony Brook University Hospital are partnering with the county health department to hold pop-up vaccine clinics in Bay Shore, Hampton Bays, and on Fire Island.

County Executive Steve Bellone and health officials announced that there will be more vaccines administered Thursday and Friday in Cherry Grove and next week on Fire Island. Appointment registration will go live on the Suffolk County website Wednesday at 5:30 p.m.

There will also be vaccine clinics on July 27 in Bay Shore and July 25, 27 and 29 in Hampton Bays. Appointments will live on July 23 at 9 a.m. For appointments, visit suffolkcountyny.gov/monkeypox

“We are confident that through our vaccination efforts and partnerships that we will be able to contain the spread of this virus and keep our residents safe,” Bellone said.

The monkeypox vaccine is being administered to eligible individuals only. According to state guidelines, eligibility includes:

  • Individuals with recent exposure to monkeypox within the past 14 days. 
  • Those at high risk of a recent exposure to monkeypox, including members of the gay, bisexual, transgender, and gender non-conforming community and other communities of men who have sex with men and who have engaged in intimate or skin-to-skin contact with others in the past 14 days areas where monkeypox is spreading. 
  • Individuals who have had skin-to-skin contact with someone in a social network experiencing monkeypox activity, including men who have sex with men who meet partners through an online website, digital application (“app”), or social event, such as a bar or party. 

Though the virus is mainly spreading in communities of gay men, anyone with close,  skin-to-skin contact with a person with monkeypox can contract it, Bassett noted during a health update alongside Gov. Kathy Hochul on Wednesday. It is not an airborne illness.

She added that monkeypox is characterized by flu-like symptoms and rashes. Sampling the rash is the only way that doctors can test a person for monkeypox.

The state is receiving a total of 8,822 monkeypox vaccine doses from the federal government in this batch.