On the 4th, Brazil received the first batch of vaccines against monkeypox. There are 9,800 doses, which will be used in a study to generate new evidence about safety, effectiveness and immunogenicity (ability to generate an immune response).
In all, the Ministry of Health ordered 50,000 doses through PAHO (Pan American Health Organization), an arm of the WHO (World Health Organization) in the Americas. The expectation was that 20 thousand would arrive by September, but the country received less than half of that forecast with the first delivery.
THE Sheet questioned the ministry about the difference between the expected and delivered quantity, but received no response until the publication of this report.
Some early symptoms of monkeypox are fever, malaise, and body aches. After that, the appearance of lesions on the patient’s body is common. Transmission occurs mainly in contact with these wounds. Although rarer, another form of transmission is through the airways.
Vaccination is an important way to prevent the disease. In the case of Brazil, Jynneos, manufactured by pharmaceutical Bavarian Nordic, was the immunizer that landed in the country. Other regions, such as the United States and European countries, were already using the drug to prevent the disease.
There is already evidence on the effectiveness of the immunizer. However, there is little data available on the level of protection from the disease in real life – something called effectiveness.
Therefore, a study will be conducted in Brazil in order to observe the effects of vaccination. According to the Ministry of Health, the research will be conducted by Fiocruz and supported by the WHO. The portfolio itself finances the study.
The main objectives are to see whether the vaccine “reduces the incidence of the disease and the progression to severe disease”, according to the ministry.
The research participants, and therefore the priority group for vaccination, will be people who have had long-term exposure to a person with a positive diagnosis for monkeypox. If applied in a short interval of days, the vaccine can stop the evolution of the disease even in people who have been exposed to the virus.
Another group of participants are people who use Prep (pre-exposure prophylaxis), a way to prevent HIV infection. People who are HIV positive and on HIV treatment can also participate in the study. In these two cases, the person does not need to have had contact with a case of monkeypox to participate in the research.
These priority groups for vaccination are different from what the Ministry of Health previously disclosed. According to the folder, health professionals would be the first to receive the vaccine, but epidemiological data indicate that they are not at greater risk for infection.
“These professionals perform collection and care for patients with personal protective equipment. If there is any prolonged and unprotected contact with a patient, this professional may be recruited”, explained the ministry.
For now, the folder still does not have defined information on the health centers that will be included in the survey.