State Health Commissioner Visited Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center to Highlight Vaccine Efforts and Community Outreach on Monkeypox

Center Also Provides Vaccination Against COVID-19 and Flu

Learn More About Monkeypox HERE

ALBANY, N.Y. (October 14, 2022) – New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett today toured Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center (MVNHC) to get a first-hand look at the Center's JYNNEOS monkeypox vaccine clinic and its outdoor pop-up tents, where COVID-19 and flu vaccines are also being administered. The Commissioner was welcomed by Center CEO, Judith Watson, and met with frontline workers in the effort to vaccinate New Yorkers against these viruses.

"Access to medical care for all is critical, especially as we face the simultaneous health challenges of monkeypox, COVID-19 and the flu," State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said. "Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center is a trusted partner working to ensure underserved communities have access to vaccines and treatments to protect their health and prevent these diseases from spreading."

The Department has remained strongly committed to an equitable distribution of the JYNNEOS vaccine in addressing this outbreak and has engaged community partners across the state to reach individuals through trusted healthcare providers like MVNHC. The Center offers the JYNNEOS vaccine through scheduled appointments and walk-in clinics on Mondays and Tuesdays at its site in Mount Vernon and by appointment on Wednesdays at its location in Greenburg. Appointments for the JYNNEOS vaccine can also be scheduled through many county health departments which you can access on the State's dedicated monkeypox website.

Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center CEO Judith Watson said, "We are pleased to host Dr. Bassett in the furtherance of our efforts to increase vaccination rates for all, particularly those who are the most vulnerable residents of Westchester County. Vaccination is the single most important step that we can take to ensure safety for all and is consistent with our mission to improve the lives of our community members."

In addition to the JYNNEOS vaccine, MVNHC also provides other preventative vaccines, including COVID-19 vaccines and boosters. The Mount Vernon location offers COVID vaccines on Thursdays for adults and children, and on Fridays for adults only. Flu shots and other vaccines are available at all sites with or without an appointment to ensure a seamless process for patients.

Statewide eligibility for the JYNNEOS vaccine now includes all individuals at risk of becoming infected with Monkeypox. Exposure includes the following:

  • Individuals with recent exposure to a suspected or confirmed monkeypox case within the past 14 days. (PEP)
  • Those at high risk of a recent exposure to monkeypox, including gay men and members of the bisexual, transgender, and gender non-conforming community and other communities of men who have sex with men and who have engaged in intimate, or skin-to-skin contact with others in the past 14 days in areas where monkeypox is spreading. (PEP++)
  • Individuals who have had skin-to-skin contact with someone in a social network experiencing monkeypox activity, including men who have sex with men who meet partners through an online website, digital application ("app"), or social event, such as a bar or party. (PEP++)
  • Any individual who may be at risk of future exposure to infection with monkeypox, even though they are not at high risk of a recent exposure to monkeypox. (PrEP)

Monkeypox is a rare viral illness that does not usually cause serious illness but can result in hospitalization or death. Monkeypox typically begins with a flu-like illness and swelling of the lymph nodes and progresses to a rash on the face and body. Most infections last two to four weeks.

Those who experience symptoms consistent with monkeypox, such as characteristic rashes or lesions, should contact their health care provider for a risk assessment. This includes anyone who traveled to countries where monkeypox cases have been reported or has had contact with a someone who has a similar rash or received a diagnosis of suspected or confirmed monkeypox.

The State's monkeypox website has additional information and resources, including:

New Yorker's can sign-up for the text campaign by texting "MONKEYPOX" to 81336 or "MONKEYPOXESP" for texts in Spanish. Providing a zip code will enable those who sign up to opt-in to location-based messaging, if they choose. The vaccine reduces the likelihood of infection for those who may have been exposed and may reduce the severity of symptoms.

For more information about monkeypox, including case counts by county, treatment, and care, visit: here.

Event Photos