One-fifth of children aged five to 11 in British Columbia have registered, awaiting vaccine approval from Health Canada – .

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One-fifth of children aged five to 11 in British Columbia have registered, awaiting vaccine approval from Health Canada – .


In its recent approval of the COVID-19 vaccine for children, the U.S. Center for Disease Control said in clinical trials, the vaccine’s side effects were mild, self-limiting, and similar to those seen in adults. The most common side effect was pain in the arm.

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About 70,000 children aged five to 11 have registered in British Columbia for the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine, which is expected to be approved for use soon by Health Canada.

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When cleared in Canada, the vaccine will be available to approximately 350,000 children in British Columbia, providing protection to the last age group excluded from the vaccination campaign.

British Columbia health officials say that when the vaccine becomes available in British Columbia, it will likely be administered through a mix of community clinics, pharmacies and school clinics.

“We are continuing to communicate with school districts on the current rollout and will provide more information to the public, parents and schools when the vaccine is approved for use in this age group,” the spokesperson said. Department of Health, Jill Nessel, in a written statement.

The Pfizer vaccine has already been approved for use in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration and approved by the Center for Disease Control. Vaccinations started there this week.

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In Canada, federal health authorities received clinical trial data on the use of Pfizer in children somewhat later than in the United States.

Once vaccine trials have been evaluated and accepted by Health Canada, health officials in British Columbia say they understand the manufacturer will have to reformat the vaccine itself, which will add time before it is available for sale. delivered to children. Children will receive a lower dose than that given to those 12 years of age and older.

A recent Angus Reid poll found that half of parents in British Columbia with children between the ages of five and 11 planned to have their children vaccinated, while 15 percent said they would not. Another 11% were not sure and 15% said they would eventually get their children vaccinated but wait a while first.

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In the next age group, 12 to 17 year olds, who received vaccine approval last spring, adoption has been strong.

Data from the BC Center for Disease Control shows that nearly 80 percent of teens were fully immunized as of October 19, the latest date for which figures are available.

This week, Dr. Bonnie Henry, a health worker from British Columbia, admitted that there are people who fear giving the vaccine to young children.

Henry is convinced that Canada has a very robust process for evaluating the safety and effectiveness of vaccines.

But Henry said it’s also important for parents to understand the possible side effects and make sure the vaccination process is comfortable for children, especially younger ones.

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“These are all things that we work a lot on to make sure that we have the right environment and that we have the people who can answer parents’ questions, so that they can make those choices for their children,” Henry said. .

In its recent vaccine approval, the U.S. Center for Disease Control said in clinical trials, the vaccine’s side effects in children were mild, self-limiting, and similar to those seen in adults and with others. vaccines recommended for children. The most common side effect was pain in the arm.

In British Columbia, the rate of COVID-19 infection increased significantly in early October for the 5 to 11 age group, but has fallen since then. Hospitalization rates have also increased, although children do not normally become seriously ill and deaths are extremely rare.

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Approving the Pfizer vaccine on Nov. 2, the U.S. Center for Disease Control said cases of COVID-19 in children can lead to hospitalizations, death, inflammatory syndromes, and long-term complications, such as the “long COVID”, in which symptoms can persist for months.

The CDC notes that the spread of the Delta variant, first detected in India and also the dominant strain in British Columbia, has led to an increase in cases of COVID-19 in children throughout the summer in the states. -United.

Similar to what has been observed in adult vaccine trials, the vaccination was nearly 91% effective in preventing COVID-19 in children aged 5 to 11.

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