NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – On Monday, the Biden administration is expected to make an additional 1.8 million doses of the monkeypox vaccine available for ordering. The decision comes after cases continue to rise nationwide and in Tennessee.
Tennessee Department of Health reports there are 107 monkeypox cases in the Volunteer State as of Thursday. Last week, Davidson County reported 53 cases, which makes up for half of the state’s case count.
Data provided by the Tennessee Department of Health shows that most cases in Tennessee are seen in males and African Americans. As of Aug.18, men made up 94% of the case count and African Americans made up 51% of the case count.
The CDC says the virus is mostly spread through close, intimate contact with someone who already has the virus. While the disease is commonly known for the lesions it leaves on the skin, the CDC says signs of an infection may begin with fever, headache, muscle aches and exhaustion before a rash or lesion develops.
Earlier this month, a total of 5,762 doses of the vaccine were shipped to Tennessee. As of Aug. 19, the Volunteer State has received a total of 10,762 doses of the vaccine, according to the Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response.
At this time, health officials are only administering the vaccine to individuals that qualify and are deemed as the most “at risk.”
The CDC says those who are most likely to categorize as eligible to receive the vaccine are:
- People who have been identified by public health officials as a contact of someone with monkeypox
- People who are aware that one of their sexual partners in the past 2 weeks has been diagnosed with monkeypox
- People who had multiple sexual partners in the past 2 weeks in an area with known monkeypox
- Laboratory workers who perform testing for orthopoxviruses
- Laboratory workers who handle cultures or animals with orthopoxviruses
An updated case count for Davidson County is expected to be released by the Metro Public Health Department on Thursday, August 25.