Over the summer, the LGBTQIA community dealt with a stigmatizing public health emergency called MPOX. UC Davis says MPOX has been around since the late 50s, and while MPOX is not a new, or specifically gay disease, it moved through the gay community quickly.
The community galvanized and got vaccinated, even in the face of a nationwide shortage of the vaccine.
But who got the shots, and when, highlights some glaring inequities in our healthcare system. Alameda County sent its first doses of the MPOX vaccine to Steamworks — a gay bathhouse in Berkeley — for distribution.
“I understood the reasoning behind putting it at a bathhouse,” said reporter Corey Antonio Rose, “My thing was there was such a lack of attention to detail as far as racial demographics.”
The day of the clinic at Steamworks, lines snaked around the block and reports began to travel about a second line inside Steamworks which was, says Rose, “asking people to pay on the fly.”
What happens when members of our Bay Area LGBTQ community pay to skip the line? Reporter Corey Antonio Rose has that story, plus a chat with the Oakland LGBTQ Center on Out in the Bay.
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This episode was hosted, produced and edited by Christopher Beale.