On Friday, November 10, a report examining Ireland’s response to the mpox outbreak will be launched through an online event. Funded by the HSE, the study was conducted by the MPOWER programme at HIV Ireland in collaboration with colleagues at the University of Galway and University College Dublin (UCD).
The global mpox surge in 2022 saw Ireland record a total of 227 cases that year, a number which has dropped to just 13 so far in 2023. The World Health Organization (WHO) commended the country’s response in suppressing the virus, recognising the community engagement campaigns and vaccination efforts led largely by MPOWER.
But the work isn’t finished – “Mpox hasn’t gone away,” MPOWER warned in September.
“We’re still seeing a small but persistent number of new cases globally. As long as new cases occur, the potential for new outbreaks in our community remains.”
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As part of its efforts to tackle the virus, MPOWER conducted a nationwide survey during the outbreak to better understand the views and experiences of gbMSM during the public health emergency of international concern.
The report, due to be unveiled later in the week, explores the community’s perception of the outbreak and its impact on daily lives, as well as preferences on support and information provision. It also describes thoughts on the prevention, experience and aftermath of mpox, with the survey’s key findings informing a range of important recommendations for policy.
The online launch will kick off at 1pm with a welcome and introduction from MPOWER Programme Manager Adam Shanely, followed by a presentation on the research findings delivered by SPHeRE PhD Scholar David Comer. Next, University of Galway’s Dr Chris Noone and UCD’s Dr John Gilmore will engage in a discussion surrounding the report on Ireland’s mpox response, and the event will conclude with Q&A.
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