Low supply halts D.C. monkeypox vaccine appointments

The District of Columbia has stopped making appointments for monkeypox vaccinations, just one day after opening its clinic to the public.

DC Health said that “Due to limited availability of monkeypox vaccine, DC Health is unable to schedule new appointments for the monkeypox vaccine clinic at this time.”

Officials advised people to keep checking the department’s social platforms for an update on the next appointment availability.

Mayor Muriel Bowser and DC Health jointly announced the clinic’s opening on Monday, saying that 300 appointments would be made available for its first day on Tuesday.

Those who missed out were asked to return to DC Health’s website soon, where another 300 appointments would be made available for Thursday.

The clinic was also supposed to be taking appointments for Sunday, and if demand was high enough, would make time on Wednesday for inoculations as well.

SEE ALSO: White House rolls out monkeypox strategy with testing, 300,000 vaccine shots for at-risk populations

D.C. isn’t the only major city with a lackluster rollout of the monkeypox vaccine. New York City had to turn away walk-ins when it first opened its clinic last week as the city was only given 1,000 doses of the vaccine.

“This is yet another example of a public health failure. And consider what we just went through with COVID-19, we should be much more prepared,” said NYC Council Member Erik Bottcher, according to WNBC in New York. Mr. Bottcher pointed the blame at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Suspected monkeypox cases in New York City have jumped from 39 late last week to 55 as of Tuesday, according to WNBC. The city is the nation’s hot spot for the disease.

The Biden administration is ramping up its distribution of the vaccine to areas in need.

The administration said it will allocate 296,000 doses of vaccine in the coming weeks, including 56,000 immediately.

It is a major escalation from the campaign that previously distributed 9,000 doses of stockpiled vaccines.

Over the coming months, 1.6 million doses will become available nationwide as the administration digs in for a lengthy effort.

• Tom Howell Jr. contributed to this report. 

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