California Governor Gavin Newsom on
Monday declared a State of Emergency to combat an outbreak of
Monkeypox in the state.
California has over 800 confirmed and
probable cases of Monkeypox out of more than 4,900 nationwide.
“California is working urgently
across all levels of government to slow the spread of monkeypox,
leveraging our robust testing, contact tracing and community
partnerships strengthened during the pandemic to ensure that those
most at risk are our focus for vaccines, treatment and outreach,”
Newsom said in a statement. “We’ll continue to work with the
federal government to secure more vaccines, raise awareness about
reducing risk, and stand with the LGBTQ community fighting
The declaration comes less than a week
after San Francisco issued a state of public emergency over the
The outbreak has hit the LGBTQ
community the hardest. According to The New York Times, over
95 percent of cases in the United States are among men who have sex
with men. While the virus appears to be spreading mostly through
sexual activity, close contact with an infected person – or
touching items such as clothing or bedding that previously contacted
an accompanying rash – is all that is needed to pass on the virus.
The CDC has also said that the Monkeypox virus can be spread through
The governor's office said that
California has administered 25,000 doses of the Monkeypox vaccine and
plans to increase available doses in the coming days. That is only a
small fraction of the doses needed to get the outbreak under control.
San Francisco has said that it needs a minimum of 70,000 doses of the
The state also said that it has
expanded its testing capacity to process more than 1,000 tests per
week and is running a campaign to raise awareness about the outbreak.