Monkeypox information and resources


Monkeypox (MPX) has been declared a Communicable Disease Incident of National Significance.

Information on this page was last updated on Wednesday 2 November 2.30pm (AEDT)

Recent updates include:

If you are aware of a patient who has MPX symptoms or who is concerned that they may have been exposed to the infection, contact your state or territory health authority urgently or visit the Department of Health and Aged Care’s monkeypox webpage.

 

Key MPX information for health professionals and patients

The Department of Health and Aged Care have developed a fact sheet which provides information on MPX symptoms, risks and treatment. The fact sheet is suitable for use by both health professionals and patients.

 

MPX vaccine availability updates

The Federal Government has secured 450,000 doses of the new third-generation JYNNEOS® MPX vaccines, developed by Bavarian Nordic. Approximately 22,000 doses have now arrived in Australia with the remainder to arrive later this year and into 2023.

Australia is one of a limited number of countries to secure supplies of this vaccine in 2022 and in doing so, is ensuring the increased safety of those at higher risk of exposure to MPX.

States and territories have now received MPX vaccines from the first delivery and will manage the vaccine rollout within their jurisdictions. This includes prioritising access to the initial doses to manage the immediate outbreak, based on who is at greatest risk of exposure or severe illness and their local context.

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) has recommended key groups to be vaccinated. More information on MPX vaccines and the recommended groups to be vaccinated can be found within the drop-down section on this webpage titled ‘Where can I find the latest clinical guidance?’

Clinical guidance on vaccination against MPX

ATAGI guidelines
ATAGI has released clinical guidance on vaccination against Monkeypox. The latest guidance (published 24 August 2022) includes:

  • New advice on intradermal administration of JYNNEOS® (MVA-BN)
  • New advice on smallpox vaccination after confirmed monkeypox infection
  • Updated storage and handling advice for JYNNEOS® 
National Clinical Evidence Taskforce living guidelines 
The National Clinical Evidence Taskforce (the Taskforce) have developed living guidelines for the clinical care of people with MPX.

The Taskforce will revise and add recommendations each week as evidence teams and expert panels identify priority clinical questions and synthesise new research.

Do you have a clinical question? You can submit your question for the Taskforce here.
 

Vaccination recommendations for MPX

In summary, ATAGI recommends the following key groups to be vaccinated against MPX:

  1. Post exposure prophylaxis (PEP): Anyone categorised by public health authorities as a high risk monkeypox contact in the past 14 days.
  2. Gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men (GBMSM) who are at the highest risk of monkeypox infection due to having a high number of sexual contacts. Risk criteria for infection may include:
    • Those living with HIV.
    • A recent history of multiple sexual partners, participating in group sex, or attending sex on premises venues.
    • Other proxy markers, such as recent sexually transmitted infection or those being advised to take HIV PrEP due to number of sexual partners. Whilst many people prescribed HIV PrEP are monogamous with a HIV positive partner, this category can also capture those with multiple partners who are at high risk.
    • Recommendation from other service providers, such as sexual health clinics.
  3. Sex workers, particularly those whose clients are in high-risk categories.
  4. Anyone in the above risk categories who is planning travel to a country experiencing a significant outbreak, with vaccination recommended 4-6 weeks prior to departure.
  5. Anyone at greater risk of a poor clinical outcome from monkeypox infection, such as individuals with immunocompromise.
  6. Immunisation providers who are administering the ACAM2000™ smallpox vaccine.

 

Patient referral and specimen collection resources

The Department of Health and Aged Care have published a collection of resources to assist healthcare professionals with the key steps involved in patient referral and testing of suspected MPX cases.

These resources include:

If you are aware of a patient who has monkeypox symptoms or who is concerned that they may have been exposed to the infection, contact your state or territory health authority urgently or visit the Department of Health and Aged Care’s monkeypox webpage.

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