Report investigates willingness to receive smallpox vaccine for mpox prevention in Japan

First report investigating the willingness to receive smallpox vaccine for Mpox prevention in Japan

Mpox, formerly known as “monkeypox,” is a disease resulting from a viral infection. Notably, numerous cases of mpox have been reported among men having sexual intercourse with other men. Since 2022, the disease has primarily spread across Europe and the U.S., leading the World Health Organization to declare a public health emergency. Japan has also reported cases of the disease, and its outbreak is attracting considerable attention.

Mpox bears similarities with smallpox, and therefore, the smallpox vaccine has been approved as a preventive measure against mpox. In light of this infectious disease, which is thought to be influenced by gender and sexual orientation, a survey was conducted to determine the number of people willing to get vaccinated.

Now published in the journal Vaccine, the survey comprised data from more than 20,000 responses. The results revealed that 23% of the male respondents and 13% of the female respondents were willing to receive the vaccine. Furthermore, willingness toward vaccination was higher among homosexual respondents than their heterosexual counterparts.

The smallpox vaccine is not commonly administered currently. Hence, it is crucial to disseminate reliable information on the effectiveness of the vaccine. Further, it is important to ensure that vaccination does not inadvertently foster discrimination against sexual minorities.

More information:
Daisuke Hori et al, Sexual orientation was associated with intention to be vaccinated with a smallpox vaccine against mpox: A cross-sectional preliminary survey in Japan, Vaccine (2023). DOI: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2023.05.050

Journal information:

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