The European Commission has made an announcement on September 1 that it has purchased an additional 170,932 doses of monkeypox vaccines from Danish pharmaceutical company Bavarian Nordic. The vaccines are likely to be delivered by the end of the year.
As per the statement released by Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, “While we have seen the number of monkeypox cases lowering down in the European Union over the recent weeks, the threat has not passed, & we cannot let down our guard. We must continue to keep up the pace of our efforts to save our citizens, especially the most vulnerable.”
The new purchase brings the overall number of doses directly purchased by the EU to 334,540. Vaccines already purchased earlier in the year will continue to be delivered in the coming months to the EU Member States along with Norway and Iceland.
In Belgium, the overall number of infections from the monkeypox virus has risen to 726 since the beginning of the outbreak, Belgian health organisation Sciensano reported on September 6. As in much of the Europe, the number of new cases in Belgium is on the way down.
On July 24, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has triggered its highest level of alert in order to stop the pandemic from escalating even further.
In Belgium, 699 of the 703 confirmed were detected in men.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has further asked vulnerable communities to reduce the number of sexual contacts to curb the transmission of the virus. The virus is thought to be spread via skin-on-skin physical contact, other intimate contact, or sharing sanitary objects like sheets or towels.