One in three people are missing their monkeypox vaccine appointments, Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has said.
There have been around 200 cases recorded in Ireland this year and the HSE has opened 11 vaccination clinics nationwide; bookings opened last week but officials say that huge numbers of people are ‘no shows’ at the appointment.
“One of the things I would ask, for those who have got bookings on the portal, is the HSE are reporting back to me that there is quite a high level of people not turning up,” Minister Donnelly told Newstalk.
“The so-called ‘DNA’ or Did Not Attend.
“In fact, it’s as high as one in three people who’ve booked a slot and aren’t showing up - for whatever reason.
“I would just ask anyone who has one of those slots, there’s a lot of demand for them, to please do everything you can to turn up.”
Monkeypox overwhelmingly affects gay and bisexual men; the HSE is prioritising this group for vaccination and has urged any man who has had three or more sexual partners in the past three months.
Gay men who have had group sex or contracted an STI in the past six months are also encouraged to get the vaccine.
At present, no vaccination slots are available but the HSE portal will open again to bookings next month.
Main image: Man with blisters on his hands from monkeypox. Picture by: Alamy.com