Sep. 2—Maryland residents can now preregister to receive a monkeypox vaccine through an online system the Maryland Department of Health opened on Friday.
The state's preregistration system is currently intended for people who have had close contact with someone with monkeypox or have potentially been exposed to the virus in the previous two weeks.
However, according to a news release on Friday from the Frederick County Health Department, people who do not meet those eligibility criteria should still preregister.
If eligibility expands, they will be notified of available vaccine appointments.
The county health department will contact people who have preregistered for a first dose of the vaccine, once they are determined to be eligible and a vaccine is available, the release said.
Preregistration does not guarantee someone will be able to book an appointment.
People who preregister will be required to create an account with the online system and complete a confidential survey. All information gathered through the survey will only be used by state health departments to determine vaccine eligibility and schedule vaccine appointments, the release said.
Monkeypox vaccinations are free. People who have trouble registering can call 443-488-4648 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Monday through Friday.
There were 534 monkeypox cases in Maryland as of Friday, according to the state health department's database for the virus.
Exact case numbers for counties reporting 0 to 9 monkeypox cases are not provided. Frederick County has cases of the virus, state health department spokesman Chase Cook confirmed earlier this week, but no more than nine.
People who have monkeypox symptoms should contact their health care provider, the release on Friday said.