New York has apparently recorded over 1,345 cases of monkeypox, the highest number in the United States, according to the CDC data.
Due to this, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul issued an executive order late last Friday to declare monkeypox a “disaster emergency.” Her statement claims her office will strengthen ongoing efforts to limit a recent increase in cases.
New York City is now the second U.S. city, after San Francisco, to issue an emergency order due to the virus. Monkeypox, according to officials, mostly spreads among gay and bisexual men through intercourse.
According to official estimates, approximately 150,000 NYC residents face possible exposure.
Hochul wrote this in a press release:
“More than one in four monkeypox cases in this country are in New York state, and we need to utilize every tool in our arsenal as we respond.”
“It’s especially important to recognize the ways in which this outbreak is currently having a disproportionate impact on certain at-risk groups,” she added. “That’s why my team and I are working around the clock to secure more vaccines, expand testing capacity and responsibly educate the public on how to stay safe during this outbreak.”
The emergency declaration went into effect immediately after release. This has allowed the state’s health department to issue orders under the New York City Health Code and access more funds and resources to “slow the spread” of the virus.
New York’s Department of Heath reported at least 1,383 cases as of July 29. Of those numbers, New York City alone makes up for 1,289 cases.
Following the emergency declaration, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, and Health Commissioner Ashwin Vasan also declared a public health emergency for the city on Saturday, July 30, calling the city “the epicenter” of the outbreak.
Their joint statement read:
“This outbreak must be met with urgency, action, and resources, both nationally and globally, and this declaration of a public health emergency reflects the seriousness of the moment.”
The Daily Wire reports with more details:
Two days earlier, New York Governor Kathy Hochul issued an executive order declaring a State Disaster Emergency in response to the outbreak.
“More than one in four monkeypox cases in this country are in New York State, and we need to utilize every tool in our arsenal as we respond,” Hochul said. “It’s especially important to recognize the ways in which this outbreak is currently having a disproportionate impact on certain at-risk groups.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that the U.S. has at least 5,189 reported cases of Monkeypox, which spreads through skin-to-skin and extended face-to-face contact, hugging, kissing, and sexual intercourse. Symptoms include fever, headache, cough, sore throat, and nasal congestion. The disease can also cause painful rashes and blisters.
While Monkeypox is not spread exclusively through sex, the disease infects gay men at a far higher rate than any other demographic.
The Biden administration could declare Monkeypox a national public health emergency in the coming days, according to Politico. The announcement would come from the Department of Health and Human Services and give the federal agency the ability to new money and appoint new personnel.
New York City marks the second major city in the United States, following San Francisco, to declare a public health emergency.
The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global health emergency last week, its highest level of alert, over the monkeypox outbreak.