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Here's how to get a monkeypox vaccine in each Tampa Bay area county

Demand for the vaccine outweighs supply.

TAMPA, Fla. — Monkeypox cases continue to rise in Florida and at the same time, demand for the vaccine outweighs the current supply.

At the time of this story, the CDC is reporting 10,768 confirmed cases in the country with 1,053 in Florida, making it the state with the third-highest number of cases. According to the Florida Department of Health, the Tampa bay region has about 90 cases.

The federal government started shipping vaccines in July to specific areas with reported monkeypox cases. Cities and counties with high case numbers received more vaccines.

Brian Bailey, the chief marketing and experience officer for Metro Inclusive Health said the non-profit health organization is receiving daily calls, emails and social media messages from people looking to get their hands on a dose of the monkeypox vaccine.

Currently, county health departments in Florida are offering vaccines to high-risk individuals or those who fit certain criteria.

Dr. Robert Wallace with Love The Golden Rule clinic said he has roughly 500 HIV-positive patients who he prioritized for the vaccine. Meanwhile, many other patients are confused and frustrated about the lack of access. 

"We know that anyone can get this virus. We just have to know how it’s spread. We have to know if it’s mutating and becoming more contagious and we’re in a state of flux," Dr. Wallace said.

RELATED: Florida Department of Health again offers 2nd monkeypox dose after new federal authorization

10 Tampa Bay reached out to county health departments across the region about vaccine availability and accessibility. Here's what we learned:

Pinellas County

According to its website: "While supplies last, JYNNEOS vaccine is being offered to individuals with known exposure or risk factors for monkeypox who are currently asymptomatic. Those with risk factors include immunocompromised men who have sex with men (MSM) with HIV and other MSM with a recent history of a sexually transmissible disease. 

"They can be seen on a walk-in basis at the St. Petersburg, Pinellas Park, Mid County, and Clearwater Health Departments between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Bring a picture ID and go to the front desk/admitting for registration. Please call us at 727-824-6931 to ask about availability; however, it is on a first-come, first-served basis."

Hillsborough County

A spokesperson said, "As vaccine operations change in Hillsborough County, we will make an announcement" and sent a link to the resource page.

In Hillsborough County, monkeypox vaccines are presently only available to those that are at highest risk for contracting monkeypox and/or have been exposed to the virus.

Jynneos vaccine is being allocated to jurisdictions for use for the following individuals:

  • Known contacts who are identified by public health via case investigation, contact tracing, and risk exposure assessments
  • Presumed contacts who may meet the following criteria:
    • Know that a sexual partner in the past 14 days was diagnosed with monkeypox
    • Had multiple sexual partners in the past 14 days in a jurisdiction with known monkeypox
  • Immunocompromised MSM with HIV (< 200 CD4 white blood cells per ml3) with potential exposure
  • Laboratory personnel and select health care personnel at high risk for monkeypox
  • All other MSM with HIV or a history of STDs who had a potential monkeypox exposure

Pasco County

A spokesperson passed along the newest criteria as of Aug. 11:

  • Laboratory personnel and select health care personnel at high risk for monkeypox
  • Close contact with monkeypox cases
  • Immunocompromised MSM with HIV (< 200 CD4 white blood cells per ml3) with potential exposure
  • Other MSM with a recent history of a sexually transmissible disease
  • All other MSM with HIV who had potential exposure
  • All MSM

*Other high-risk groups

Pasco County residents that meet the above criteria can call the Pasco County Health Department to schedule an appointment to come in for vaccination by calling the main line at 727-619-0300.

Polk County

"DOH-Polk is currently providing monkeypox vaccination (Jynneos) to people who are determined during an epidemiologic investigation to be in close contact with a monkeypox case and as a preventative measure for those at high risk for infection. DOH-Polk will be expanding access to monkeypox vaccines (Jynneos) within the next week.

"Individuals can call DOH-Polk information line at 863-519-7911 for questions about monkeypox vaccine eligibility and access in Polk County."

Sarasota County

"We’re currently recommending that anyone who suspects they were exposed or who has a rash or blister-like lesions should see their physician to be evaluated. Commercial labs and private providers can do testing. For those that don’t have a healthcare provider, we would recommend making an appointment with one of our FQHC healthcare providers, MCR Health, (941) 867-0125 or CenterPlace Health, (941) 529-0200 for testing and treatment.

"Individuals who believe they are at high risk and would like to receive the vaccine are welcome to call to be evaluated to receive the vaccine (941) 861-2873."

Manatee County

A spokesperson said, at this time, Manatee County is only offering the vaccine to people who had close contact with someone who had a confirmed case of monkeypox.

RELATED: Yes, monkeypox can spread by touching contaminated surfaces, but current risk is low

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