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What dental professionals should know about the monkeypox outbreak: 8 notes

The Biden administration declared the monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency Aug. 4, clearing the way for officials to access additional resources to control the outbreak. 

Here are eight notes for the dental industry: 

1. The declaration comes as the U.S. surpasses 7,000 cases, more than any other country so far, according to an Aug. 4 case count by the CDC.

2. The declaration allows officials to gain access to vaccines and treatments, supporting development, distribution and administration. 

3. Xavier Becerra, HHS secretary, said he is considering a second declaration that would increase flexibility by allowing federal officials to expedite potential treatments and vaccines without going through a full federal review.

4. Biden administration officials recently estimated that the U.S. would need nearly $7 billion to adequately address the monkeypox outbreak.

5. The Jynneos vaccine is the only FDA-approved vaccine for monkeypox, but it remains in short supply. The U.S. had distributed more than 600,000 doses as of Aug. 4. 

6. According to the CDC, monkeypox is often spread via direct contact with infectious sores, scabs or body fluids. 

7. Although the virus does not spread as easily as COVID-19, there is some risk for respiratory transmission and some evidence to support that the virus can be suspended in the air. However, it is not clear whether a person can get infected when the virus is airborne.

8. The White House plans to name a coordinator who will oversee the nation's response to monkeypox, the Washington Post reported July 25.

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