Biden creates a White House response team for monkeypox, with three states announcing emergencies.


Dr. Marc Siegel, a Fox News contributor, explains the current monkeypox outbreak to viewers on “Fox News Live.”

NEW Fox News articles can now be heard on audio! As the monkeypox virus spreads across the country’s cities and states, President Biden on Tuesday announced the formation of a team to organize and oversee the White House’s response activities.

The White House National Monkeypox Response Coordinator is Robert Fenton, a regional administrator for the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The deputy coordinator is Dr. Demetre Daskalakis, who was also named by the president.

The White House announced Tuesday that “Fenton and Deaskalakis will head the administration’s strategy and tactics to address the current monkeypox outbreak,” including equally expanding access to diagnostics, immunizations, and treatments.

Throughout his tenure, Fenton has led “several complex prevention, response, and recovery operations” and served on two separate occasions as FEMA’s acting administrator.

Currently serving as the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Division of HIV Prevention is Daskalakis, a renowned expert in public health. He “is a specialist on health concerns affecting the LGBTQIA communities,” according to the White House. Previously, Daskalakis was in charge of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s handling of infectious diseases.

Monkeypox virus is detected in human vesicular fluid (

Tubes labled "Monkeypox Virus" with positive and negative results pictured in this illustration taken May 23, 2022.

Tubes labled “Monkeypox Virus” with positive and negative results pictured in this illustration taken May 23, 2022. (REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration)

The White House said both officials played “critical roles in making COVID vaccines more accessible for underserved communities and closing the equity gap in adult vaccination rates.”

Chief medical advisor to the president, Dr. Anthony Fauci, added that the team “will allow the Biden administration to further accelerate and strengthen its monkeypox response.”

The two officials are expected to coordinate and manage response efforts across the White House and all federal departments and agencies, as well as work with local, state, national and international stakeholders on “tracking and fighting the spread” of monkeypox.

California, Illinois and New York have declared monkeypox states of emergencies.

The first case of monkeypox was confirmed in the United States on May 18.

So far, the Biden administration has made more than 1.1 million doses of vaccine available to states and cities across the country to control the spread of the virus, and has expanded testing capacity from 6,000 tests per week to more than 80,000 tests per week.

“Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as variola virus, the virus that causes smallpox,” the CDC notes on its website.

Monkeypox symptoms are milder than smallpox symptoms and monkeypox is rarely fatal.

The virus is not related to chickenpox, says the CDC. Monkeypox was discovered in 1958 when two outbreaks of a pox-like disease showed up in monkeys kept for research.

Monkeypox virus present In human vesicular fluid.

). via Getty Images, BSIP/UIG

Headache, muscle aches, fatigue, fever, backache, lymph node swelling, and chills are a few of the symptoms of monkeypox.
According to the CDC, lesions and a rash can appear within one to three days.
The CDC lists a number of healthy steps that we can all do to reduce contact and illness transmission.

These recommendations include avoiding close skin-to-skin contact with those who have a rash, not touching anyone who has monkeypox, not sharing utensils, plates, or cups, not handling or touching the bedding, towels, or clothing of someone who has the virus, and frequently washing your hands with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

The CDC advises persons who have monkeypox to isolate themselves at home, stressing that very close physical contact is another factor in the virus’s quick spread.

The CDC advised people to “remain in a separate room or area away from people or pets you live with, wherever feasible,” if they have an active rash or other symptoms.

Deirdre Reilly from Fox News contributed to this story.
Fox News Digital’s politics reporter is Brooke Singman. Her email address is, and her Twitter handle is @BrookeSingman.