Howard Brown Health Commends Gov. Pritzker for Declaring MPV Public Health Emergency
Howard Brown Health commends Governor Pritzker for declaring monkeypox virus (MPV) a public health emergency in the state of Illinois. This declaration allows for streamlined coordination across state agencies to expand efforts to prevent the spread of MPV, included expanded testing and vaccination capacity. The emergency declaration also opens up additional resources and funds that will be necessary to scale up MPV response efforts. As an LGBTQ+ health center, Howard Brown has been leading efforts to provide MPV testing, vaccination, and treatment since the start of the MPV outbreak. We have seen how devastating this virus can be, and have encountered unnecessary barriers to providing appropriate MPV prevention and treatment services for our patients. This emergency declaration must serve as an urgent call to action for our state leaders to coordinate a comprehensive and equitable response to the MPV outbreak. This response should prioritize increasing vaccine access, decreasing barriers to treatment, simplifying the testing process, collaborating with and funding trusted community partners, and ensuring access to factual and non-stigmatizing information about MPV and harm reduction. We look forward to working closely with Governor Pritzker and the state agencies on coordinated efforts to keep Illinoisans safe and healthy amidst the MPV outbreak.
Erik Roldan, Director of Communications and Marketing
Howard Brown Health exists to eliminate the disparities in healthcare experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people through research, education and the provision of services that promote health and wellness. Howard Brown is the largest LGBTQ organization in the Midwest, providing primary and specialty healthcare, social services, and infectious disease screenings to more than 35,000 people each year. In response to the pandemic, Howard Brown has limited services to 8 of its 11 clinic locations and launched telephone and video options for patients to access care via telehealth. Learn more at howardbrown.org.