Israel earned the title of ‘vaccination nation’ because of the aggressive campaign it had launched for combating COVID-19.
Now, it appears that the company has launched a similarly intensive drive to protect people who are at the risk of getting infected with monkeypox.
Almost 2,000 people have been administered the vaccine for monkeypox since they were first rolled out in the beginning of August.
According to medical professionals, even though the number may not indicate so, but this is a significantly big achievement.
When it came to COVID, they had to vaccinate everyone, but in the case of monkeypox, their strategy is to immunize only the ones who are considered at risk.
Therefore, every time someone is administered the monkeypox vaccine, it is a huge success in terms of pinpointed preventative health.
The chairman of the LGBT Medical Association in Israel, Dr. Gal Wagner said that the vaccination drive was turning out to be a success.
Dr. Wagner also added that it was a good decision to only vaccinate those who are significant risk because the number of vaccines is limited.
He added that high technology health systems had proven to be essential and the LGBT community was also practicing risk-minimization to support the campaign.
Monkeypox in Israel
The first monkeypox case that had been identified in Israel had been back in May when a man who had returned from abroad had been diagnosed.
Since then, there have been a total of 203 cases in the country. Monkeypox is contagious and even though it tends to be mild, it can also lead to serious illness.
So far, Israel has received about 5,000 vaccines and it is expected to receive another 5,000 in the next couple of weeks.
Since the cases that have been diagnosed are exclusively found in men who have sex with other men, the vaccines are being administered to people in this demographic.
They are being administered to men who are HIV-positive, have been diagnosed with two sexually transmitted diseases since last year, or are taking prophylaxis.
These are drugs taken to protect people from HIV.
Dr. Wagner said that the high-tech medical record keeping in Israel had turned out to be crucial for its COVID-19 campaign and had also done the same in the case of monkeypox.
He said that it had simplified the task of identifying people who are most at risk and then reaching out to them, thereby eliminating a needle-in-a-haystack challenge with just a few buttons.
Wagner stated that such record keeping had been immensely helpful in this situation because computers can identify who are receiving prophylaxis, or have had two STDs and more.
These people are automatically approved to receive the vaccination. He said that they were doing well, even if the numbers are rising slowly.
He added that the LGBT community was aware of the risks and was taking steps to reduce them, such as using protection and keeping the number of partners limited. They had also shut down saunas and sex parties.