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Hidalgo County begins administering monkeypox vaccines

1 month 1 week 6 days ago Wednesday, August 17 2022 Aug 17, 2022 August 17, 2022 4:50 PM August 17, 2022 in News - Local

A population of individuals considered “high-risk” were vaccinated with the monkeypox vaccine Wednesday, Hidalgo County announced Wednesday.

The vaccinations were done as a preventative effort as there are no confirmed monkeypox cases in the county, according to a news release.

RELATED: Cameron County reports first case of monkeypox in the Rio Grande Valley

The county received 500 vials of the vaccine through the Texas Department of State Health Services – meaning that the vaccine is only available for 1,250 high risk patients who will receive two shots, the news release stated.

“Although neighboring counties also received vaccines from the state, health officials from the Rio Grande Valley agreed to target high risk populations for the preventive vaccine measures,” according to the news release. “A percentage of the vaccines received in the Rio Grande Valley was shared with area Westbrook Clinics in McAllen and Harlingen to target the highest risk population. Hidalgo County’s health department also went through its existing client list and reached out to the highest risk patients to arrange for the vaccine to be administered to them.”

The vaccine is not yet available to the public, and Hidalgo County Health and Human Services Chief Administrative Officer Eduardo “Eddie” Olivarez stated in the release that there is a limited supply of the vaccine nationwide. 

“The state has already alerted us that new vials of vaccine may not arrive until the end of November so health officials agreed to target those most at-risk with this initial supply of vaccines,” Olivarez added.

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