Monkeypox NYC: Vaccine remains in short supply

As the number of monkeypox cases in New York continues to grow so does the demand for the vaccine. 

New York so far has received more than 28,000 doses. Just this weekend alone, over 9,000 appointments in New York City were booked within minutes. 

Lines wrapped around the building at three pop-up sites in Queens, the Bronx, and Brooklyn. Those sites joined Health Department sites already operating in Harlem and Chelsea in Manhattan and Corona in Queens.

The monkeypox vaccination rollout also took place in Cherry Grove on Fire Island this weekend. Making an appointment there was not any easier. 

New York City is considered the epicenter of the virus with just over 600 cases. So far, Long Island has at least seven cases. 

Doctors say the symptoms are consistent with mild illness but rashes and sores can be very painful.

David Kilmnick with the LGBT Network hopes the process of getting vaccinated gets easier as the virus is spreading primarily among gay and bisexual men with multiple partners. 

"The first case that we found out about monkeypox, we should've been on top of it getting vaccines ready and not letting the disease get ahead of us," Kilmnick said. "We have to make sure that no matter where you live. Mineola to Montauk, there is easy and safe access to get the vaccine."

Two pop-up vaccination sites in Suffolk County (Southampton Hospital in Hampton Bays and Westfield Mall in Bayshore) and another two in Nassau County (NUMC and at a Northwell clinic near LIJ) will be open throughout the week. 

Gov. Kathy Hochul plans to announce a major increase in the number of doses available in the coming days. 

"I speak every single week with the White House about how many more doses we can receive," Hochul said.

Health departments for both state and the city recognize the urgency of responding to the outbreak. The state expects to receive more than 32,000 additional doses this week. The plan is to distribute them as quickly as possible.