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Africa CDC in 'advanced' talks to obtain monkeypox vaccines

A health care worker prepares a dose of the JYNNEOS Monkeypox vaccine at a pop-up vaccination clinic in Los Angeles, California, on August 9, 2022.   -  
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PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP or licensors


Africa's public health agency says the continent of 1.3 billion people still does not have a single dose of a monkeypox vaccine, but discussions were underway with at least two partners.

The acting director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Ahmed Ogwell, told journalists on Thursday that he could not give details, but said the partners are largely multilateral institutions and non-African governments.

There are no discussions with the private sector because all available doses have already been bought by countries, he added.

More monkeypox deaths have been reported on the African continent this year than anywhere in the world.

Since May, nearly 90 countries have reported more than 31,000 cases.

At least 2,947 monkeypox cases have been reported in 11 African countries this year, including 104 deaths, but most of the cases reported are suspect ones because the African continent also lacks enough diagnostic resources for thorough testing, the Africa CDC director said.

The lack of vaccine doses and shortage of diagnostics is an echo of the challenges that Africa's 54 countries faced for months during the COVID-19 pandemic as richer countries elsewhere raced to secure supplies.