CDC advisors vote to recommend routine use of the mpox vaccine to protect people at high risk of infection

Men who have sex with men and others who are at high risk of mpox infection should get two doses of the Jynneos vaccine, even now that the recent public health emergency in the United States has passed, according to an independent panel of experts that advises the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on its vaccine decisions.

CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, or ACIP, voted unanimously on Wednesday to recommend that certain individuals ages 18 and older who are at high risk for getting mpox continue to get the vaccine as a routine part of their sexual health care. Previously, the CDC had recommended vaccination of high-risk individuals during the outbreak.

The recommendations now move to CDC Director Dr. Mandy Cohen, who must sign off.

More than 31,000 Americans were diagnosed with mpox in the 2022-2023 outbreak, including 55 who died, according to CDC data. Most of those who were infected were gay men.

According to the CDC, people at high risk for catching mpox include gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men, transgender and non-binary people who in the past six months have had at least one of the following: a new diagnosis of at least one sexually transmitted disease; more than one sex partner; sex at a commercial sex venue or in conjunction with a large public event in an area where mpox is spreading; sexual partners of people who have those risks; and people who plan to participate in any of the previous activities.

More than 2 million people in the United States are eligible for vaccination against mpox under the new recommendations, according to the CDC. To date, approximately 23% of this group has received the recommended two doses of Jynneos.

Bavarian Nordic, the manufacturer of the vaccine, says it’s preparing for a commercial launch of Jynneos in the United States in the first half of 2024.

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