People at higher risk of exposure to monkeypox (MPX) can now schedule vaccination appointments online through Contra Costa Health.
To book an appointment, go online to mpxvaccine.cchealth.org.
Previously, people in Contra Costa had to submit an appointment-request form to get on a waiting list for vaccine. Increased vaccine supply is allowing Contra Costa Health to now let community members directly schedule their own appointments without having to get on a waiting list.
“We know people are eager to get immunized against MPX and adding online scheduling will make access to the vaccine in Contra Costa a lot easier and more convenient,” said Dr. Ori Tzvieli, health officer for the County.
MPX vaccinations will be offered at our COVID vaccine sites in Richmond and Concord; appointments are currently required, although we hope at add walk-in service soon as vaccine supply increases. Contra Costa Health is also planning pop-up vaccination clinics with community partners serving the LGBTQ community in the near future. Private and community healthcare systems are starting to carry the vaccine, so people should check with their regular healthcare providers about getting vaccinated.
The MPX vaccine, Jynneos, can be given preventatively or up to four days after an exposure to the virus. After symptoms appear, it’s too late and the vaccine won’t help. Anitviral treatment known as TPOXX may be available to people sick with MPX; people should check with their regular providers about treatment options.
Overall vaccine supply remains limited. Contra Costa Health is prioritizing vaccination for people at higher risk of exposure or infection to MPX, such as close contacts of known cases, sex workers and gay, bisexual, and other men or trans people who have had more than one sexual partner in the past 14 days.
While anyone can get MPX, not everyone is at equal risk. The large majority of current cases are among men who identify as gay or bisexual, particularly men who recently have had sex with multiple men. The virus primarily spreads through skin-to-skin contact, including sexual contact.
The Bay Area has the highest MPX case rate in the state. As of Aug. 16, there have been 40 confirmed or probable MPX cases in Contra Costa.
Most people recover from the illness at home, although the rash or sores can be very painful. There have been no deaths in California or the United States from MPX this year.
MPX belongs to the same family of viruses as smallpox. Infected people develop rashes or sores that can look like pimples or blisters. Someone is contagious from the time symptoms appear until they no longer have symptoms and rashes have fully healed, a process that can take 2-4 weeks. Those infected with the virus should isolate at home while they’re contagious.
For more information, visit our MPX web page.