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DBCH Hosting Upcoming Monkeypox Vaccine Clinics

Published: 10/12/2022

No current cases thanks to public outreach, education and vaccination opportunities

Poughkeepsie, NY ... The Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health (DBCH) will be hosting two upcoming JYNNEOS/Monkeypox vaccine clinics this month for residents at the highest risk of monkeypox infection.  Education, outreach and vaccinations have helped keep the number of reported monkeypox cases in Dutchess County very low, with no new cases reported since August 24th and no current active cases.

Residents must meet current eligibility criteria set by New York State to register for an appointment. According to the NYSDOH, those eligible for monkeypox vaccine at this clinic include:

  • Individuals with recent monkeypox exposure to a suspected or confirmed case of monkeypox in 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 in 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 app, or social event, such as a bar or party.
  • Any individual that may be at risk of future exposure to infection with monkeypox, even though they are not at high risk of a recent exposure to monkeypox.

The JYNNEOS monkeypox vaccine is given in a two-dose series, 28-35 days apart. Individuals are considered to be fully vaccinated two weeks after the second dose of vaccine.

DBCH Commissioner Dr. Livia Santiago-Rosado said, “When monkeypox cases were initially being reported, our public health team got right to work educating the public about monkeypox and offering vaccinations to those at the highest risk.  Thankfully those efforts have been successful as there no active cases in our community.   We encourage everyone, particularly those in high risk populations, to be mindful about monkeypox and consider vaccination if eligible.”

The first case of monkeypox in Dutchess County was reported on July 21st, 2022.   There have been a total of 10 cases, including the initial case, reported in Dutchess County, with no new reported cases since August 24th.     DBCH Public Health Advisors worked in conjunction with local organizations and businesses, including Dutchess Pride, Sun River Health, Sloop Brewery in East Fishkill and the Roosevelt Bar in Beacon, on community outreach to inform and educate the public about Monkeypox and how to avoid spread.  Several vaccination clinics have been held for eligible residents and to date more than 209 have been vaccinated.   

Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as variola virus, the virus that causes smallpox and is spread through close, physical contact between people and anyone can get it. However, based on the epidemiology, certain populations are being affected more than others, including men who have sex with men (MSM). The virus spreads through contact with an infected person’s rash, or potentially through respiratory droplets from prolonged face to face contact. The virus may also spread through contact with objects that were used by an infected person (clothing, bedding or towels). Children aged 8 or under, and pregnant or immunocompromised individuals have a higher risk of severe illness or complications, but these are rare.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends residents take the following steps to prevent getting monkeypox:

  • Do not touch the rash or scabs of a person with monkeypox;
  • Avoid close, skin-to-skin contact with people with a rash that looks like monkeypox, or who may have been exposed to monkeypox;
  • Do not kiss, hug, cuddle or have sex with someone with monkeypox or someone suspected or known to have been exposed;
  • Do not share eating utensils or cups with a person with monkeypox or someone suspected or known to have been exposed;
  • Do not handle or touch the bedding, towels or clothing of a person with monkeypox or of someone suspected or known to have been exposed; and
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

A person is considered contagious until all lesions have healed over with intact skin. The CDC advises those sick with monkeypox to isolate at home and stay in separate from others and pets, when possible.

Residents can call DBCH staff for education and guidance on Monkeypox at 845-486-3404. For more information on Monkeypox or to fill out the Monkeypox vaccine questionnaire visit