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Houston, Harris County receive 10K additional monkeypox vaccines

Both the Houston and Harris County health departments hope the shipment helps over 5,000 people in the area.

HOUSTON — An additional 10,000 monkeypox vaccine doses arrived in Houston Wednesday. The shipment is going to be shared between the Houston and Harris County health departments.  

Even with a boost to the inventory of shots, the shipment is not what health officials expected. But they hope this will help over 5,000 people in our area.  

This is the third shipment of monkeypox vaccines the city has received.

“We are really happy to receive them. This will help us in the fight against monkeypox,” said Houston's Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Persse. “It’s not as much as we would like. But as they are able to procure more we will turn around and give it to those in our community that need it most,” said Dr. Persse.

Thirty percent of the shipment will be going to the Harris County Health Department. The rest to Houston Health Department. And although 10,000 vaccines sound like a lot, people need two doses to be fully vaccinated.

RELATED: Houston Health Department reviewing new guidance from Texas DSHS on monkeypox vaccine

“It sounds like we are already behind the curve to how much we need. We are trying to be strategic at those who are at greatest risk and contracting and spreading the virus,” said Dr. Persse.

That is why they’re asking a specific group of individuals to sign up first.

“Those predominantly at this point, men that are having sex with men and have multiple sexual partners, new partners in particular or having anonymous sex,” said Dr. Persse.

Those with HIV are also asked to get vaccinated.

RELATED: Houston-area health departments prepare to administer monkeypox vaccine via new method in effort to increase supply

They say 90 percent of their cases are coming from this group alone. And they also want to remind people the vaccine is not 100 percent effective.

“We believe this vaccine is going to be about 85 percent effective. Nothing in medicine is 100 percent. That really is pretty good as vaccines go,” said Dr. Persse.

The vaccine is free. You can sign up with the Houston or Harris County health department. They are both making appointments.

It takes about 6 weeks for a person to be fully vaccinated. 

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