State, Miami-Dade create confusion with contradictory messages on monkeypox vaccines

State and local officials have promised a coordinated response to ramp up monkeypox vaccinations, but a series of contradictory directives suggest a lack of communication among government agencies.

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – State and local officials have promised a coordinated response to ramp up monkeypox vaccinations, but a series of contradictory directives suggest a lack of communication among government agencies.

First, state health officials issued a statement on Tuesday saying they would postpone second doses of the vaccine in favor of giving as many first doses as possible.

Then, on Wednesday, Miami-Dade County officials were unaware of those instructions. The county protocol is still to have a second dose in four weeks.

Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava spoke to Local 10 News Thursday.

“We were not told to stop second doses,” Levine Cava said. “We were told to go ahead and administer the 1,000 doses that we have, that are now 5,000.”

In a statement, the Florida Department of Health said preventing the spread of monkeypox is a priority.

“With the issuance of an Emergency Use Authorization for intradermal injection of the Jynneos monkeypox vaccine, the Department is moving forward with second doses,” the statement said. “Any appointments that were canceled will be rescheduled. We will continue to make adjustments as more supplies are made available from the federal government.”

But state officials could have avoided the confusion.

The Food and Drug Administration’s plans to change vaccine dosage was already pending on Tuesday when Florida suspended second doses. The White House had already announced the plans… and they were already circulating in national news.

While officials attempt to work out the kinks, those who desperately want a vaccine, like Shalon Lopez Garcia, who is immunocompromised, will have to continue to wait.

“I’d rather be safe than sorry,” Lopez Garcia said.