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The UK Health Security Agency said accines should be offered to gay and bisexual men at higher risk of exposure to monkeypox.

In a statement, UKHSA recommended making Imvanex smallpox vaccine available to people at risk of contracting the virus as it was “proven to be effective against monkeypox”.

The Joint Committee on Immunization and Immunization (JCVI) has endorsed the plans and the NHS will soon set out how vaccinations will be implemented, UKHSA said.

Under this strategy, doctors might recommend vaccinating people who “have multiple sex partners, engage in group sex, or go to ‘spot sex’ sites.”

Dr Mary Ramsay, Head of Immunization at UKHSA, said: “Our extensive contact tracing work has helped limit the spread of monkeypox virus, but we are continuing to see A notable percentage are gay, bisexual and other men who have sex. with men. By expanding the supply of vaccines to those at higher risk, we hope to break the chains of transmission and help contain outbreaks.

“Although most cases are mild, severe illness can occur in some people, so it is important that we use vaccines that are available to populations where there is transmission.

“The NHS will be releasing details on how this vaccine will be made available soon – so we don’t have a vaccine information out yet.”

As of June 20, there have been 793 confirmed cases of monkeypox in the UK – with 766 cases in the UK.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) advises that anyone with a rash with blisters should contact a sexual health clinic if they have also had close contact, including sexual contact, with a person who has or may have had monkeypox in the past three weeks, or if they have been to West or Central Africa in the past three weeks.

According to the World Health Organization, transmission of smallpox in monkeys is being promoted by skin-to-skin contact and skin-to-mouth contact, and there is no evidence of viral change.

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