Test tubes labelled; Credit: Dado Ruvic / Reuters

On Friday 12 August 2022, Luxembourg's Ministry of Health confirmed that a total of 1,400 doses of vaccine have just been delivered to Luxembourg, as provided for in the European joint acquisition contract; the vaccines were ordered through HERA, the European Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Agency.

EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides highlighted the effectiveness of the European response: "Since the first cases of monkeypox were identified on EU territory in May, the Commission has coordinated a united and decisive for our Member States and our citizens. In total, over 160,000 doses have been purchased for Member States and are being delivered across the EU. For the first time, our European Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA) has used EU funds to purchase these vaccines so that they reach Member States and citizens as quickly as possible. The delivery of 1,400 doses to Luxembourg today is an important step in the national public health response. We also provide vital support to Member States with surveillance, data reporting, vaccination strategies and clear information for our citizens. This is a concrete example of the strength of the European Health Union we are building: having the capacity to act quickly at EU level to protect our citizens against health threats.”

Paulette Lenert, Luxembourg's Minister of Health, also welcomed the good cooperation at European level: “The COVID-19 pandemic has taught us a lot about managing health crises. We can now put this new knowledge to the test to counter monkeypox in Europe. I thank the European Commission for its efforts to provide vaccines to its Member States and thus help protect the health of its citizens.”

Launch of vaccination by appointment 

From Tuesday 16 August, it will be possible to be vaccinated against Monkey pox at the National Service for Infectious Diseases, located at the Luxembourg Hospital Centre (CHL), by appointment. 

Any person who meets the vaccination criteria defined by the Higher Council for Infectious Diseases (CSMI) and who is either:
• covered by Luxembourg social security,
• or has his/her main residence in Luxembourg,
• or has Luxembourg nationality,
can make an appointment for vaccination.

Please note that vaccination is only authorised for adults aged 18 and over.

How to make an appointment?

People who meet the criteria will be able to make an appointment with the National Infectious Diseases Service at the CHL. Appointments can be arranged from Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays), from 08:00 to 17:00, exclusively at tel: 4411-3129. Appointments can be made from 16 August 2022.

Who can get vaccinated?

Epidemiological data collected by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) indicate that the virus is currently spreading almost exclusively among men who have sex with men, often those in relationships without a fixed partner or in relationships outside the couple. Priority should therefore be given to vaccinating men who have had sex with men and several different partners in recent months to protect them and limit the spread of the epidemic to other groups of people.

Following the recommendations of the CSMI, vaccination against monkeypox can be carried out in Luxembourg:

To prevent infection:
• men who have sex with men with multiple sexual partners,
• transsexual people with multiple sexual partners,
• sex workers.

After exposure to the virus

Anyone who has been exposed to the monkeypox virus is asked to contact the Health Inspectorate at tel: 247-85650.

The vaccination schedule

Primary vaccination requires two doses 28 days apart and a third dose for those who are immunocompromised. A minimum interval of at least 28 days between the 2 doses of vaccine is important to guarantee high efficacy of the vaccine.

In case of questions about vaccination or about monkeypox, people can call the Health Helpline at tel: 247-65533.
More information on www.variole-singe.lu.
Note: It is not acceptable to stigmatize someone because of an illness. Everyone is susceptible to contracting or transmitting monkeypox, regardless of sexual orientation. The risk of contamination increases with the number of sexual partners.
For further details, see https://worldhealthorg.shinyapps.io/mpx_global/