The World Health Organization expects to hold an emergency meeting on monkeypox later this month to address the thousands of cases already reported in countries around the world, according to Reuters and other outlets. At a meeting last month, the WHO held off on calling the monkeypox case surge a health emergency.
The Reuters report notes that the "UN agency will reconvene a meeting of the committee that will advise on declaring the outbreak a global health emergency, the WHO's highest level of alert, in the week beginning July 18 or sooner, Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual news conference from Geneva."
In an article for CNN, Jacqueline Howard explains that the virus is not only surging in central and western African sites where it is normally considered endemic, but is also being reported well beyond this region, both on the African continent and beyond. Europe is currently considered an outbreak epicenter, but the virus has turned up in 58 countries.
In the US, distribution of a monkeypox vaccine called Jynneos has "been heavily concentrated in California, Illinois, and New York, particularly the three largest US cities: New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago," Howard writes, noting that monkeypox testing is set to ramp up in the US with help from the commercial firm Labcorp.
"The CDC announced Wednesday that Labcorp will be able to accept specimens for testing from anywhere in the United States," the CNN article notes, "and the company expects to perform up to 10,000 tests per week."