Concern about monkeypox before the CSD parade

Half a million people are expected to attend Christopher Street Day in Berlin on Saturday after two years of restrictions due to the pandemic.

Concern about monkeypox before the CSD parade

Half a million people are expected to attend Christopher Street Day in Berlin on Saturday after two years of restrictions due to the pandemic. This time there are fewer concerns about the corona virus than about monkeypox. Berlin is considered to be particularly badly affected nationwide. Participation in the CSD is not generally associated with an increased risk of infection, said the spokesman for the Lesbian and Gay Association (LSVD) Berlin-Brandenburg, Christopher Schreiber, on Friday.

"You have to separate two things: One is the demonstration itself, since the risk of transmission is relatively low according to the current state of knowledge," said Schreiber. "But of course there are all the events around it, including parties, where a lot of sex happens in darkrooms." In this context, there is concern that contagion could occur.

Vaccination against monkeypox, which has so far only been recommended for certain groups, started in Berlin in the middle of last week. "But the vaccine is not yet available across the board in Berlin," said Schreiber. The approximately 8,000 available vaccine doses were simply not enough for the demand in the capital. "I know that from many doctors, from many HIV-focused practices and infectious diseases practices," said the LSVD spokesman. "That's why people drive to other federal states to get vaccinated there."

André Lehmann from the LSVD federal board criticized that Berlin had apparently overslept the start of the vaccination campaign. “Vaccinations must no longer be delayed, and sufficient vaccine must be made available to medical practices without delay.”

According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the disease is mild in most cases and usually heals on its own. According to the RKI, the sick people in Germany are almost exclusively men. According to current knowledge, the transmissions took place primarily during sex with other men. In principle, anyone who has close physical contact with an infected person can become infected with the virus, according to the RKI.

André Lehmann warned against stigmatizing gay men. "The subject of monkeypox concerns everyone, because the disease can be transmitted through close physical contact," he emphasized. "A virus doesn't really care about gender or sexual identity."

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