New York City has announced that it will begin making second doses of the monkeypox vaccine available by appointment only.
People who received their first dose at least 10 weeks earlier will be notified by email or text that they are eligible for their second doses so that they can make appointments online or by phone. Second doses will only be available at least 10 weeks after the first dose and not earlier. The City will also begin welcoming walk-ins for first doses at City-run sites, though making an appointment in advance is still recommended, and there will be 8,000 public appointments available for reservation on Friday, September 2 at 4 p.m. The city’s Vaxfinder will indicate which sites offer walk-ins. In addition, to reach more New Yorkers who may be at-risk, the city will expand eligibility to people engaged in sex work.
“While our strategies have been constrained by scarcity, our goals have always been expansive, and that is to get vaccine to New Yorkers who need it, including second doses,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan. “Now that we’ve gotten first doses to more than 70,000 New Yorkers, people can get their eagerly awaited second shots by appointment — and we’re making vaccination even more convenient by welcoming walk-ins for first doses.”
On July 15, the city announced a first dose strategy to offer protection to as many New Yorkers as possible and to help stop the spread given the extremely constrained vaccine supply. A 28-day interval between doses is indicated in the FDA prescribing label. There is no concern about the immune response to the vaccine by waiting 10 weeks. Second doses will be provided at 10 weeks to ensure adequate supply and capacity for administration of vaccines to all eligible New Yorkers who need their first and second doses.
The City will continue to work with community-based organizations serving New Yorkers at higher risk to offer direct referrals for their clients.
Eligibility has so far been limited to people who meet all of the following conditions:
· People who are 18 and older who have had multiple or anonymous sex partners in the last 14 days and identify as at least one of the following:
o A man (cisgender or transgender) who has sex with cis or transgender men or transgender women
o Transgender, gender non-conforming, or gender non-binary (regardless of the gender of your sex partners)
Starting immediately, New York City will now open eligibility to sex workers and anyone engaging in survival sex or any other type of transactional sex (e.g., sex in exchange for shelter, food, money, and other goods) of any sexual orientation or gender identity.
It is crucial to seek care as soon as a rash or sore is identified. New Yorkers should call their health care provider immediately. For those who do not have one, they can call 311 to get connected to an NYC Health + Hospitals location or to access H+H Virtual Express Care. New Yorkers can also visit the NYC Health Map to find a nearby provider. Care is available in New York City regardless of immigration status, insurance coverage, or ability to pay.
For more on MPV, visit our Monkeypox page.