(KRON) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom proclaimed a State of Emergency to support the state’s response to monkeypox on Monday. The proclamation supports work that’s underway by the California Department of Public Health and others in the administration to coordinate a whole-of-government response to the outbreak, according to a release sent out by the Governor’s Press Office.
“California is working urgently across all levels of government to slow the spread of monkeypox, leveraging our robust testing, contact tracing and community partnerships strengthened during the pandemic to ensure that those most at risk are our focus for vaccines, treatment and outreach,” said Governor Newsom. “We’ll continue to work with the federal government to secure more vaccines, raise awareness about reducing risk, and stand with the LGBTQ community fighting stigmatization.”
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In order to expand vaccination efforts, the proclamation enables Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel to administer monkeypox vaccines that are approved by FDA.
“The state’s response to monkeypox builds in the infrastructure developed during the COVID-19 pandemic to deploy vaccine clinics and ensure inclusive and targeted outreach in partnership with local and community-based organizations,” read the release in part.
California has been working to expand testing capacity and as of July 28, has expanded its testing capacity to more than 1,000 tests a week. But activists have been critical regarding the state and federal response to the monkeypox outbreak, with some comparing it to the government’s response to the AIDS crisis in the early 1980s.
San Francisco Mayor London Breed has already declared a local public health emergency over the monkeypox outbreak.