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The vaccine is in limited supply worldwide including in Canada. National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) and the Government of the Northwest Territories is recommending two doses of Imvamune® 28 days apart as pre-exposure vaccination for eligible residents to reduce the risk of Monkeypox transmission for individuals who identify as — two-spirited, non-binary, transgender, or those who have sexual partners in the gay, bisexual and men who have sex with men community, AND at least one of the following applies:
- Diagnosed with a bacterial sexually transmitted infection (STI) in the past year (e.g., chlamydia, gonorrhea, or syphilis)
- Recently had two or more sexual partners or may be planning to
- Recently attended venues for sexual contact (e.g., bathhouses, sex clubs) or may be planning to, or who work/volunteer in these settings
- Recently had anonymous/casual sex (e.g., using hook up apps) or may be planning to
- Are a sexual contact of an individual who engages in sex work
Anyone who engages in sex work or may be planning to, should also be vaccinated with two doses of monkeypox vaccine.. Household members and sexual contacts of people listed above should contact a health care provider to see if they should be vaccinated.
People who have a known exposure or close contact with someone who has Monkeypox should get vaccinated, ideally within four days, but can be given the vaccine up to 14 days later. Those exposed, who have ongoing risk factors for further transmission should also receive a second dose of monkeypox vaccine 28 days after the first dose. A healthcare provider will discuss your risk with you.
If you meet this criteria, for bookings:
Public health: 767-9120
Outside Yellowknife, please call your local health centre
Monkeypox is a rare viral disease that can be spread from infected animals to humans and transmitted from person to person.
Most people recover on their own after a few weeks, but it can be dangerous for those at high risk of severe outcomes, such as those with weakened immune systems and pre-existing diseases such as diabetes.
People usually develop symptoms 5 to 21 days after being exposed to the monkeypox virus.
Symptoms typically last from 2 to 4 weeks and may pass through several stages with general symptoms and rash.
The rash can be painful and can affect any part of the body.
Other symptoms include:
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Muscle pain
- Joint pain
- Back pain
You are contagious from the onset of first symptoms until the scabs have fallen off on their own and the skin is healed.
Monkeypox can be spread in a few different ways:
- Monkeypox is mostly spread through contact with sores or blisters.
- It can also be transmitted through contaminated objects like bedding, towels or surfaces that have been used by someone infected with monkeypox virus or through respiratory droplets such as coughs and sneezes during close, face-to-face contact with a person who has monkeypox.
- Monkeypox is not known to be a sexually transmitted infection, but sexual activities often include close contact.
While most recent global outbreaks are among people who identify as gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) , anyone can become exposed and infected through direct contact to a case of monkeypox.
If you have symptoms:
- isolate at home away from others
- immediately contact your health care provider or local health centre for advice on what to do
- Monkeypox Vaccine (GNWT)
- Monkeypox FAQs (GNWT)