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A nurse receives a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine during a vaccination drive in Norfolk, Va. on Dec. 28, 2021.

A nurse receives a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine during a vaccination drive in Norfolk, Va. on Dec. 28, 2021. (Trent Sprague/TNS)

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(Tribune News Service) — The Virginia Department of Health has announced plans to reopen a regional vaccination center at Military Circle Mall in Norfolk to offer monkeypox and COVID-19 vaccinations.

“We welcome this joint effort by the City of Norfolk, Virginia Beach Health Department and the Norfolk Health Department,” said Norfolk and Portsmouth Acting Health Director Dr. Sulola Adekoya. “We encourage those in need of a monkeypox or COVID-19 vaccination, to take advantage of this free opportunity.”

The state health department closed the vaccination center on July 7 because of “an unexpected funding change.”

Monkeypox vaccines

When the Military Circle center reopens on Monday, monkeypox vaccines will be available Mondays and Wednesdays from 3 to 6 p.m.

You can register for a monkeypox vaccination by visiting https://vase.vdh.virginia.gov and clicking on monkeypox, then enter your zip code.

Monkeypox, a rare contagious rash illness caused by the monkeypox virus, is milder than smallpox, but some symptoms can be severe. It can spread from animals to people and from person to person.

The community risk for getting monkeypox is considered low at this time, according to a release from the Virginia Department of Health.

Monkeypox is spread by close contact with an infected person, and the highest risk activity right now is sex with multiple or anonymous partners, the press release said. Avoiding these activities greatly reduces your risk of catching or spreading monkeypox, the release stated.

COVID-19 vaccines

COVID-19 vaccinations will be available Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

New bivalent COVID-19 booster shots will be offered. There is no registration required.

To find a COVID-19 vaccine event near you, contact or check the website of your local health department.

To schedule a COVID-19 vaccine appointment at a pharmacy or other location, visit vaccinate.virginia.gov or call 877-VAX-IN-VA. Assistance is available in English, Spanish, and more than 100 other languages, the state health department said.

©2022 The Virginian-Pilot.

Visit pilotonline.com.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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