THH reintroduces mpox vaccination clinics in Victoria

In response to increased mpox cases in Victoria, Thorne Harbour Health (THH) have reintroduced their pop-up vaccination clinics in Abbotsford and St Kilda, so you can easily get your first or second dose.

Since mid-April, twenty-four cases of mpox (formerly monkeypox) have been reported in Victoria. These new cases were more concerning than before because twenty-one were locally acquired and for some, we couldn’t track how the individuals contracted it.

In early May, Thorne Harbour Health set up a pop-up vaccination clinic, and while that was very positive, we are still seeing mpox numbers rising.

THH have ramped up their health promotion messaging on social media. This will continue through winter, and THH are also rolling out more vaccination clinics.

“We know that it’s MPox is moving through the community which is what has prompted us to take some action,” Cal Hawk Acting Director of Health Promotion, Policy & Communications from THH said.

“Over several weeks we’re bringing back our pop-up clinics on Fridays at the Centre Clinic at the Victorian Pride Centre, and Saturdays at 200 Hoddle St in the north.

How many shots do I need?

When it comes to mpox vaccination, it takes two shots 28 days apart for the full level of protection.

“Having them at least 28 days apart is really important because you need to let your body adjust before you get your second one,” Cal said.

“But the great part about this is that for a lot of those folks that got their first shot last year, they can still just get their second shot now. This will give the highest level of protection.”

But what do you need to look out for?

What’s interesting in those fully vaccinated, their presentation of symptoms are very mild,” Cal explained.

“It may be something that looks like a blister or a zit. The best course of action is that if you’re not 100% sure, don’t hesitate to reach out to your GP and get it checked.”

“The other thing to remember is that mpox is a self-limiting disease. So, your body will eradicate the virus within a couple of weeks.

“But if you’re unvaccinated or partially vaccinated, you don’t really want to take that risk or rely on it to clear itself because the lesions can be pretty bad for some people. And depending on where they are it can be really painful.”

Who can get a free vaccination?

Gay, bi+, and queer men, all TGD people, sex workers, sex on premises staff, people living with HIV and partners of all of the above. But if you’re unsure if you fit into any of these boxes, don’t be afraid to contact Thorne Harbour and ask.

Mpox presents differently in different people, so there is no comprehensive data yet to show people what they should be looking for to find if they have it.

If you notice something and are unsure, consult your doctor, and if you haven’t had a vaccination, or have only had your first, head to one of the mpox pop-up clinics run by Thorne Harbour Health.

Click here to book an appointment or find out more information about protecting yourself from MPox.

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Dean Arcuri

QNews, Brisbane Gay, App, Gay App, LGBTI, LGBTI News, Gay Australia

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