“We have to take this seriously”

Andy Cohen is using his platform to spread an important message about the monkeypox virus.

During Monday’s recording of Watch what’s happening livethe host, 54, spoke directly to his gay male audience about the importance of being vigilant during the outbreak of monkeypox, which has disproportionately affected gay and bisexual men.

“Monkeypox cases have risen so dramatically in New York City that Mayor Eric Adams today issued an executive order declaring a state of emergency,” Cohen explained. “After what has been a disastrous response from our government so far, I hope this new order will help our leaders deal with this threat and put pressure on the federal government to deploy much-needed resources like vaccines, which have been very difficult to find. .”

Things took a dark turn when the host addressed his queer male audience directly.

“I want to talk to my gay brothers for a minute,” he began. “We need to take this seriously as it is affecting us at much higher rates than others at the moment so be aware, get vaccinated if you can and please – I know this is the summer and we all have COVID fatigue – but please be safe. Don’t take unnecessary risks. I know it’s summer, but keep it locked up.

“At the same time,” he continued, “I call on everyone in government and the media not to stigmatize our community, which is already under attack from many who would rather use us as scapegoats than help us and if you’re not a gay man you might think it doesn’t affect you now but that’s everybody’s problem because as we’ve learned from very recent history : Unless we act now, these things can get worse very quickly.

Cohen’s video has had a growing number of commenters praising the host for speaking candidly about the issue to his audience.

“THANK YOU ANDY,” fashion designer Isaac Mizrahi wrote, while actor Russell Tovey added the two-hands-up emoji.

“Thank you Andy, for this clear and caring message,” wrote one fan, while another added, “Not many people are talking about this new threat to our health. Thank you Andy. Stay safe everyone.” Another comment read, “Fantastic Andy! So thank you for using your platform for this PSA.”

The need for such a message is obvious: as of August 1, there have been 5,811 confirmed cases of monkeypox in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the vast majority being men who have sex with women. men.

Although LGBTQ activists have criticized the government’s lack of vaccine planning and distribution, monkeypox has continued to spread in other cities across America — and not just among gay and bisexual men.

As reported by ABC News, at least four children in the United States have now tested positive for monkeypox.

Meanwhile, California and New York have officially declared monkeypox states of emergency. According to the NYC Department of Health, approximately 150,000 New Yorkers may “currently be exposed to monkeypox.”

In California, as reported by The Associated Press, nearly 800 cases of monkeypox have been reported in the state, according to state public health officials. To date, the state has received more than 61,000 doses of the vaccine and distributed more than 25,000.

Although monkeypox is rarely fatal, India has just reported one death and Spain has reported two, raising concerns. People usually recover within a few weeks, although sores and blisters caused by the virus are extremely painful, especially when they occur in the throat or anus.

At this time, according to the CDC, it is not known whether it can be spread through semen or vaginal fluids. It is known, however, that people who do not show symptoms of monkeypox cannot transmit the virus to others.

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