Editor’s Note: The following article is derived from officially released information, published with few or no editorial changes. The Greylock Glass occasionally provides our readers with such content if the information is factual in nature, and requires little to no interpretation or analysis, often when original reportage would not provide additional relevant information.
PITTSFIELD AND NORTH ADAMS — Berkshire Health Systems, in partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, will be offering monkeypox vaccination clinics in Pittsfield and North Adams in mid-September. The clinics are open to individuals who are at-risk for monkeypox and eligible to receive the vaccine. Monkeypox vaccination requires two doses a month apart.
The monkeypox clinics will be held on Saturday, September 17th as first dose clinics. In Pittsfield, the clinic will be held at the BHS Testing & Vaccine Center, 505 East St., St. Luke’s Square, from 9 am to 12 noon, with a capacity to vaccinate up to 54 people. A first dose clinic will be held in North Adams, at the BHS Testing and Vaccine Center, 98 Church St., next to the city library, from 2 to 4 pm the same day. Capacity for that clinic is up to 36 people.
Second dose clinics will be held on Saturday, October 15th in the same locations and at the same times, from 9 am to 12 noon in Pittsfield and 2 to 4 pm in North Adams. These clinics are open to those who received the first dose at the September clinics.
An appointment and meeting eligibility are required for these clinics. To schedule an appointment and to determine eligibility, please call the BMC LINK LINE, 855-BMC-LINK, (855-262-5465). The LINK LINE is open weekdays from 8 am to 4:30 pm and nurses can answer questions regarding the vaccine and eligibility requirements.
According to the Department of Public Health, vaccination will be available to individuals who live or work in Massachusetts and meet the CDC’s current eligibility criteria, prioritizing those who are most at risk of exposure to an individual with monkeypox. This includes:
- Known contacts identified by public health via case investigation, contact tracing, and risk exposure assessments (this may include sexual partners, household contacts, and healthcare workers); as well as
- Presumed contacts who meet the following criteria:
- Know that a sexual partner in the past 14 days was diagnosed with monkeypox
- Had multiple sexual partners in the past 14 days in a jurisdiction with known monkeypox
While many of the identified cases are within networks of self-identified gay and bisexual men, other men who have sex with men, and transgender individuals who have sex with men, people of any sexual orientation or gender identity can become infected and spread monkeypox.
For more information, visit www.berkshirehealthsystems.org/monkeypox.