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Pritzker declares monkeypox a public health emergency

5 Aug 2022 8:57 AM | Deborah Hodges (Administrator)

Gov. JB Pritzker on Monday declared monkeypox a public health emergency.

The declaration will allow the Department of Public Health to better coordinate logistics across state agencies when it comes to vaccine distribution and working with the federal government on a response to the virus, he said. [Health News Illinois]

IDPH and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency will also be able to access state and federal recovery and assistance funds to expand vaccine and testing capacities.

“(Monkeypox) is a rare, but potentially serious disease that requires the full mobilization of all available public health resources to prevent the spread," Pritzker said in a statement.

Monday’s declaration, effective for 30 days, also allows for emergency procurements to aid the state's response.

IDPH on Tuesday reported 533 probable and confirmed cases in Illinois, making it the state with the third highest case count.

Illinois has received more than 7,000 doses of vaccine from the federal government, with IDPH saying an additional 13,000 doses are expected in the “near future.”

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady praised Pritzker's action in a joint statement, adding the city will not issue its own declaration.

They said more needs to be done at the federal level to address the outbreak.

 "It is our hope that this declaration joins a chorus of others across the nation and encourages the rapid increase and distribution of vaccines," they said.


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