Learning from Mpox

In a new policy brief, amfAR and the O’Neill Institute discuss what mpox taught us about responding to public health threats.

amfAR’s Andelson Office of Public Policy and the O’Neill Institute at Georgetown Law have issued a new policy brief on lessons learned from the 2022 mpox (monkeypox) outbreak response.

The two public health programs led the call to action when a global outbreak of a new variant of mpox became a public health emergency in the U.S. last May, heavily impacting gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender people, especially those living with HIV.

amfAR and O’Neill published a series of issue briefs, and amfAR’s Greg Millett, M.P.H., Vice President and Director of Public Policy, delivered numerous presentations for policy makers and community advocates, and co-authored editorials in the prestigious journals, The BMJ and American Journal of Public Health. In addition, Dr. Susan Blumenthal, amfAR Senior Policy and Medical Advisor, and Lawrence Gostin, professor of Global Health Law at Georgetown University, wrote an op-ed in The Hill arguing for a national mpox strategy.

As mpox has not been eliminated and in light of a possible resurgence this summer, the brief authors offer a concise analysis of what worked within public health responses to mpox. The analysis should serve as a blueprint for supporting the prevention, treatment, and care needs of people—especially those within the most vulnerable communities—facing public health threats in the future.

The brief provides vital insights on the importance of community engagement in vaccine promotion and educational efforts; sex-positivity in messaging; and, considering that Black Americans accounted for 87% of U.S. deaths among people with mpox, ensuring equity in public health responses, among others.

Quick Take: Community Partnerships Make Public Health More Effective: Learning From The 2022 MPOX Outbreak Response

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