Watch: Monkeypox Vaccine Distribution Halted in New York City on First Day Due to Demand

Thursday June 23, 2022

Actor Tim Hickernell who told NYC news outlet News 4 about his experiences with the monkeypox virus.
Actor Tim Hickernell who told NYC news outlet News 4 about his experiences with the monkeypox virus.  (Source:News 4/NYC)

New York City initiated a monkeypox vaccine on Thursday and needed to halt appointments due the high demand, writes the news site PIX11.

The New York City Department of Health tweeted: "Due to high demand, we will no longer be able to accommodate walk-ins today. Check back on Sunday for additional appointments. Currently, all appointments are filled through Monday, June 27."

"The vaccine site was opened at the Chelsea Sexual Health Clinic," reports PIX11. "The temporary clinic will administer the two-dose vaccine to people who "may have had a recent exposure to monkeypox." The clinic is open Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m."

The New York City Department of Health are said to be "in talks with the CDC to obtain more doses." But Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine said the city was only given 1,000 doses of the vaccine — "far, far too little," writes PIX11.

In a statement, the New York City Department of Health said they are "in talks with the CDC to obtain more doses."

"Some 30 people have tested positive for the virus in the city since early May, almost all of them men who have sex with men, and the number of cases has risen 60% in just the last week," reports "In total New York City represents more than 20% of all cases diagnosed nationwide."

As of 2 p.m. Thursday, "just three hours after opening its doors, the city said no more walk-ins would be accommodated and that all appointments were filled through Monday. News 4 counted more than 100 people lined up outside the clinic at the time," writes

Also on Thursday, The World Health Organization (WHO) convened an emergency meeting "to consider if the spiraling outbreak of monkeypox warrants being declared a global emergency. But some experts say the WHO's decision to act only after the disease spilled into the West could entrench the grotesque inequities that arose between rich and poor countries during the coronavirus pandemic."

New York actor Tim Hickernell explained to News 4 about his experience with the virus. He went to a doctor after told he had been exposed. Six days after exposure he checked his body and found some mild redness, a light rash and irritation. Next he found three circular lesions near his groin, but still felt okay despite "freaking out."

More than a week after he was told of being exposed, Hickernell experienced fever, fatigue, pain behind the eyes, congestion, then further lesions.

"I pretty much didn't get out of bed for three days," Hinkernell said. "The crazy thing with this is they are changing. The sores evolve over time."

More than two weeks after exposure, he developed lesions on his face and hand, along with ongoing swollen lymph nodes.

"Hickernell, who mainly spent his contagious period in isolation at home, says he tried to get tested earlier this month but ran into the same problems that the partner who notified him about the exposure did. He says he was discouraged by 311 dispatchers that transferred him from one line to another and a lack of easy access to information," News 4 writes.

He also feels that official messaging on the crisis has been wrong-headed by only focusing on the LGBTQ community. "Well, what about what about your girlfriend that you go dancing with right and you rub up against each other and then you get her sick? It could happen to anyone. I think we need to talk more about like sex education, sex positivity."

Hickernell adds that he doesn't feel that the Pride outlets in the city are doing an effective job in getting the message out about the transmission of monkey virus. "Definitely think these pride producers need to send out some messaging and some warnings of how to be a little bit more safer. I think people should check their bodies," he tells News 4.

"Check someone else's body before you have recourse or before you dance with them. I don't know it's it sounds like a lot but you kind of have to treat this as like a COVID situation."