"The vast majority of health departments that I've talked to in the last week are feeling fortunate if they can get four [monkeypox vaccine] doses out of a vial, and in some cases three," versus the five doses the US Food and Drug Administration said could be derived for intradermal injection.
"This new [COVID-19] vaccine that we are talking about is going to have the old vaccine in it. Plus, it's going to have the BA.4 and BA.5 sub-variants in it. The data is clear and compelling that the additional doses do reduce serious illness, hospitalization, and death. So I will be very interested to see how many people actually take up these vaccines."
"When Omicron first came, we had this huge peak, but once we got to the BA.4, BA.5 predominance in early summer, we've been just flat. It's like a high plateau, if you look at hospitalizations, you look at deaths, the two major data pieces we can use to try to illustrate what's going on in the community. It's amazing to see how flat it's been, a few percent up and a few percent down week from week to week."
"I commend CDC for taking this [reorganization] on. But if you could really do a wonderful job of fixing the CDC challenges, that’s only fixing a part of the problem in this country. So much of this is still at the state and local health departments."
“The current [COVID-19] vaccines… are only preventing limited infection, and they are not stopping much of the transmission, we know that,” Osterholm said. “But at the same time, they are very effective, very effective in reducing serious illness, hospitalization, and death.”
“We don’t yet have the data to know how effectively an intradermal-administered [monkeypox] vaccination will protect immunocompromised persons," referring to the US Food and Drug Administration plan to inject one-fifth of the normal vaccine dose under the top layer of skin rather than into fatty tissue, a strategy to immunize more people against the poxvirus.
"Ninety countries right now have cases with this [monkeypox], all wanting the same vaccine that we want. And that is why as a country we have got to get together, the gay community, medical leaders, public health leaders from the local area, to decide, 'If I only have 2,000 doses of vaccine and I've got 8,000 people who need it, how are we going to get that out? Who gets prioritized?' That's going to be with us for months to come, don't expect anything to the contrary."
“Right now we just don’t have nearly enough [monkeypox] vaccine to even begin to have a measurable impact on widespread global transmission. There’s going to be a lot of frustrated people who want to get vaccine where it won’t be available.”
"If we chase this virus by just trying to catch up with the subvariant development and they make new vaccines, we'll always be a day late and a dollar short. The still most important thing is get the regular vaccine we have right now, knowing that it won't necessarily protect you from getting infected but it can go a long ways in protecting you from serious illness, hospitalizations, or deaths."
"This is really a hyper-transmissible virus. And if you look right now, as BA.5 is increasing, we're seeing this exposure now with the level of infections where this virus is. If you have a good elevator ride, you very well could get infected."
“These vaccines, you know, are not going to be the perfect stop-gap....They’re not going to prevent all transmission, they’re not going to prevent all illnesses, but they will do a lot to reduce serious illness in these kids.”
South Africa has "seen many breakthrough infections of people who were infected with [Omicron] BA.1 8 to 10 weeks ago and then got BA.4 and 5 just in the last 2 weeks. The good news is it's a much less serious illness, generally speaking."