San Diego County's local health emergency for monkeypox has expired as new cases have decreased significantly, a fact county public health officials attribute to outbreak response measures such as contact tracing and vaccinations.
Since mid-October, the number of new monkeypox cases has remained five for fewer per week.
"We have reached a point in our MPOX response where a local health emergency is no longer necessary, now that ample testing, treatment, and vaccines are available,'' County Public Health Officer Dr. Wilma J. Wooten said Thursday. "Although the virus remains in the region and there is still work to
be done in stopping its spread, I am very proud of how the community and our healthcare partners collaborated in responding to the outbreak and am confident that will continue into the future.''
The county declared the health emergency on Aug. 2 to "effectively respond to the virus and stay ahead of its spread, seek available resources,
and ensure the most effective distribution of vaccine and treatment,'' according to a county statement.
While the emergency declaration has ended, the county will continue to provide the JYNNEOS vaccine — which helps protect people from getting the
illness — at vaccination events and County Public Health clinics. First- and second-dose vaccinations remain available at Public Health Centers.
Those being vaccinated now have the option of an intradermal shot into the skin of the forearm, or a more traditional shot into the upper arm.
Nearly 13,000 people in San Diego County have received at least one dose of the JYNNEOS vaccine.
Eligible San Diegans who have not received their first or second dose of the JYNNEOS vaccine should do so to ensure maximum protection against the
virus, county public health officials said.
San Diego County has had a total of 448 MPOX cases since the first case was reported on June 15.