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The Biden administration on Thursday declared a public health emergency for monkeypox in a bid to unlock funding and more powers to deal with the virus, which officials say is primarily spreading among homosexual males.
Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Beccera issued the declaration, saying in a Thursday conference call with reporters that the move will allow for quicker distribution of the monkeypox vaccine. Becerra was joined by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky and Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Robert Califf on the call.
“I will be declaring a public health emergency on monkeypox … we’re [taking] our response to the next level,” Beccera said, adding Americans should take “monkeypox seriously.”
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