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Saturday, August 13, 2022

Former FDA commissioner: America probably failed to control monkeypox

Scott Gottlieb, a former Food and Drug Administration commissioner, said the US may have lost its chance to halt the ongoing outbreak of monkeypox, warning health officials were likely only detecting a “fraction” of the actual number of cases. .

Gottlieb commented on CBS’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday, telling host Margaret Brennan that while monkeypox was not going to hit the whole country like the coronavirus, America should be able to get it under control with more aggressive measures. was supposed. Monkeypox, he said, is now “strongly embedded in the community” and is likely to remain so.

“I think, at this point, we have failed to contain it,” he said. “We are now on the verge of becoming an endemic virus, where it has now become something that persists that we need to continue to tackle. I think the window to get control over it and keep it is probably closed. And, if it hasn’t taken off, it’s definitely starting to take off.”

The CDC says there have been more than 1,800 confirmed cases of monkeypox in nearly every US state as of July 15. The virus is mainly transmitted through close contact with infected people or animals and so far cases have been mainly identified in males who have sex with males.

Gottlieb warned that the US has made similar mistakes in containing the monkeypox outbreak as the country did at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, failing to test people early and making it harder for the virus to spread. Did not supply enough vaccines to make.

Some cities, including New York, have started vaccination campaigns for those at risk of contracting the disease, but health officials warn that many more doses are needed and demand exceeds supply. The US has ordered about 7 million doses, but many of them will not arrive in the country for months.

“We are probably detecting only a fraction of the actual cases, because … we had a very narrow case definition for a long time as to who got tested. And, by and large, we are seeing men having sex with men in the community and STD clinics,” Gottlieb said. “But it is a fact that there are cases outside that community right now.”

“We’re not picking them up because we’re not looking there,” he continued. “It’s spread more widely in the community. I wouldn’t be surprised if there are thousands of cases right now.”

The nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, echoed those sentiments on CNN this weekend, saying the CDC’s figures “are likely to be too low.”

“This is something that we definitely need to take seriously,” Fauci said. “We don’t yet know its scope and potential, but we have to act in such a way that it will have the potential to spread much more widely than what is spreading now.”

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World Nation News Desk
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