London, June 22 – Some gay and bisexual men, who are at a higher risk of contracting monkeypox, should be offered a vaccine, say the UK health officials.
According to the BBC, this could help to control the recent outbreak of the rare virus in the UK in which 793 people have been infected so far.
The report mentioned that Monkeypox is not defined as a sexually-transmitted infection. However, it can be passed on by close contact during sex, and with bedding, towels and skin.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said that a vaccine designed to protect against smallpox, called Imvanex, will help protect people who could be exposed to monkeypox.
The vaccine is effective against monkeypox because it is from the same family of viruses. Its use has been signed off by the UK’s vaccine experts, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).
Health officials say they are continuing to see “a notable proportion of cases in gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men”.
They say they hope to roll out vaccines to those at higher risk that will “break chains of transmission”.