ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The New York State Department of Health will distribute over 15,000 doses of the monkeypox vaccine to anyone at risk of infection.

“By expanding eligibility, we are hopeful that many more New Yorkers will get immunized and prevent further transmission,” State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said. “This distribution plan, and the eligibility expansion, will enable us to get the vaccine to more individuals across the state before they are exposed.”

The vaccines will also be available to people with recent exposure to a suspected or confirmed monkeypox case within the past 14 days.

Health officials say those people should work directly with their local health department and healthcare provider to discuss obtaining the vaccine as soon as possible.

Under the new NYSDOH guidance, exposure includes the following:

  • Individuals with recent exposure to a suspected or confirmed monkeypox case within the past 14 days.
  • Those at high risk of recent exposure to monkeypox, including:
    • Gay men and members of the bisexual, transgender, and gender non-conforming community.
    • Other communities of men who have sex with men.
    • Those who have engaged in intimate, or skin-to-skin contact with others in the past 14 days in areas where monkeypox is spreading.
  • Individuals who have had skin-to-skin contact with someone in a social network experiencing monkeypox activity.
  • Any individual who may be at risk of future exposure to infection with monkeypox, even though they are not at high risk of a recent exposure.

In the coming days, 3,840 vials of the vaccine will be shipped in from the federal government, with 100 of those doses delivered to Albany County.