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Experts weigh in on Toronto’s monkeypox response

From the North York Mirror article

While one expert argues the response from Toronto to monkeypox spreading through a marginalized queer community has been ideal, another thinks more support is needed. Both agreed a flashback to historical HIV stigma toward sexual minority men should be avoided.

The disease, which is endemic to many African countries, spreads through respiratory droplets and physical contact. It has infected 194 people in Toronto, with the first Canadian case reported on May 19 in Montreal.

According to Darrell Tan, a clinician and scientist at the division of infectious diseases at St Michael’s Hospital, municipal public health data combined with international research collaboration, indicates 99 per cent plus of monkeypox infections in nonendemic countries are of men who have sex with men (MSM).

Following Ontario Ministry of Health guidelines, Toronto has been providing vaccine clinics to just sexual minority men. However, it’s aftercare support where the city falls flat, Michael Kwag, director of knowledge exchange and policy development at Community-Based Research Centre, said.

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