The U.S. Government Had What It Needed To Prevent the Spread of Monkeypox. It Happened Anyway.
Monkeypox arrived in the U.S. in May, and it appears as though, despite the last two years of dealing with an epidemic that pretty much shut down the entire country, federal agencies like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are still falling on their faces in response.
In the two months since the first case of monkeypox was discovered, the U.S. has seen at least 800 more people infected, and that’s likely an undercount due to lack of testing.
Monkeypox is a viral disease spread primarily among humans by close skin-to-skin contact or exchange of bodily fluids. (This includes sex, but to be clear, it’s not just a sexually-transmitted disease.) It starts with symptoms similar to the flu, leading to painful rashes and lesions that can last for weeks. Fortunately, it’s typically not fatal, and there have been no U.S. deaths reported. The virus originated in Africa and spread once to the U.S. in 2003. This latest outbreak spread to Europe and then to the U.S.
The U.S. knows how to treat monkeypox. We have vaccines to prevent it, approved by the FDA in 2019. And yet, here we are watching a virus spread because apparently, the government is unable to effectively operate a program to respond in a timely fashion to an emergency.
NPR reports that the reason the infection rate is likely undercounted is that the CDC was not prepared to roll out testing and vaccinations, even though we’ve known it was coming for some time.
But it gets worse. We have many of the vaccinations we need to stop the spread. We have more than 1 million doses of vaccines sitting in a warehouse in Denmark. Why are they still there after the virus arrived in the U.S. two months ago? Tiresome and now-familiar red tape from the FDA.
New York magazine reports that
Article from Reason.com