211: Monkeypox Response

Dr. Marcus Plescia, ASTHO’s Chief Medical Officer, discusses the growing concern over the monkeypox virus; Ellen Pliska, ASTHO’s Family and Child Health Senior Director, details a new supplement to the American Journal of Public Health addressing...


Dr. Marcus Plescia, ASTHO’s Chief Medical Officer, discusses the growing concern over the monkeypox virus; Ellen Pliska, ASTHO’s Family and Child Health Senior Director, details a new supplement to the American Journal of Public Health addressing work to improve access to contraception in the U.S.; and Mike Fraser, ASTHO CEO, says in a Governing article he agrees ASTHO members believe data systems need to be modernized. 

American Journal of Public Health Webpage

Upstream USA Webpage: Delaware CAN

Governing Web Article: Public Health Struggles to Get Rid of Its Data Silos

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Transcript

ROBERT JOHNSON:

This is Public Health Review Morning Edition for Friday, July 1st, 2022. I'm Robert Johnson.

Now, today's news from the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials.

 

MARCUS PLESCIA:

We're seeing some more cases of monkeypox and we're seeing it in more widespread areas. And, you know, the bigger concern is that what we're seeing may just be the tip of the iceberg.

JOHNSON:

ASTHO Chief Medical Officer Dr. Marcus Plescia on the growing concern over the monkeypox virus.

PLESCIA:

Every state where we're seeing transmission is beginning to offer the vaccine to people who've potentially been exposed. I think that's a prudent move to try to control this outbreak.

The next question for states, and what I think states need to be thinking about, is do you have communities where cases are starting to pick up even more and are there groups in those communities who seem to be a particularly high risk?

JOHNSON:

Plescia says there are two vaccines available to protect against monkeypox, noting supplies of the preferred formula will be limited for a few weeks while production ramps up.

PLESCIA:

So, we have a few weeks here where we're going to have to be sparing with the supply that we have. Our understanding is that in July, the supply will really pick up considerably and we should be able to have more free-flowing access to the vaccine.

JOHNSON:

Even as vaccine supplies are expected to grow this month, Plescia says the federal government was prepared, making decisions that have resulted in more doses available early in the response than are currently on hand in other countries regarding the question of the monkeypox outbreak compared to COVID-19 precious as they're not the same.

PLESCIA:

I don't think anybody's worried that we've got another COVID star pandemic on our hands, but we are worried because we're saying the numbers pick up and that's concerning. And you know, we still don't know if we might begin to see more severe cases and even deaths come from this.

 

JOHNSON:

ASTHO is co-sponsor of a new supplement to the American Journal of Public Health, addressing work to improve access to contraception in the U.S.

Ellen Pliska is ASTHO's family and child health senior director.

ELLEN PLISKA:

The supplement features articles describing how these projects are developed, implemented, and evaluated, and these initiatives featured how states and other areas add the evidence of contraception access through how they impact their individual community clinical and health outcomes.

JOHNSON:

Pliska says ASTHO partnered with the Coalition to Expand Contraception Access on the journal supplement, working together on the project for at least a year and a half.

PLISKA:

What we're ultimately hoping for this journal supplement is to really add to the growing evidence base around why statewide contraceptive access initiatives are so important to health gaining access to contraception. And what we're really hoping is that we can really show that there's a really important evidence base around statewide contraceptive access initiatives, and to make it an ultimately part of the community guide really solidifies it as a critical and very needed piece in public health.

JOHNSON:

The supplement is available online now. Among the resources is a case study looking at a successful campaign in Delaware.

PLISKA:

They had really fun and flashy and out there advertising, so people knew about it. They worked with several rideshare programs to ensure that folks could get to their appointments and then offered free contraception access to those in need. And it was highly successful and led to a dramatic drop in their unintended pregnancy rates, as well as some improvement in some of their other health outcomes as well.

JOHNSON:

You can access the journal supplement using the link in the show notes.

 

Finally today, a new survey of public health officials says data strategies and technology platforms are top priorities for most of them. But according to a report in Governing, high costs and politics have posed challenges to those goals. ASTHO CEO Mike Fraser is quoted saying he agrees ASTHO members believe data systems need to be modernized. You can read the story using the link in the show notes.

 

That'll do it for today's newscast. We're off Monday for the July 4th holiday, back Tuesday morning with more ASTHO news and information.

I'm Robert Johnson. You're listening to Public Health Review Morning Edition. Have a great holiday weekend.

Marcus Plescia MD MPH

Chief Medical Officer, ASTHO

Ellen Pliska MHS

Senior Director, Family and Child Health, ASTHO