Children aged five to 11 to get vaccines by month-end; health workers being trained

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Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony says that children aged five to 11 years old could get their Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines by the end of November as health workers are already being trained to administer these jabs.

The minister said this on Tuesday during his daily COVID-19 update.

His statements come as the local authorities are pushing for wider vaccination to return the country to a greater sense of normalcy, including a return to full face-to-face classes.

Dr. Anthony explained that for this young age group, the vaccine dose administered will be about one-thirds of the amount given to adults. As such, it was necessary for the health workers to be trained in administering this vaccine.

Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony

There are some 84,000 primary school children and 27,000 nursery school children, but not all of those children will be eligible for the vaccines since they all do not fall within the five to 11 age category.

The local authorities are pushing for a full return to face-to-face classes because there have been significant learning losses recorded through the pandemic.

Vaccinating children is an important part of that return.

“We want our kids back in the classroom,” the Education Minister Priya Manickchand stated recently.

On Tuesday, however, the Health Minister related that the local authorities are awaiting final documentation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States of America (USA) on the rollout of these vaccines in the younger age group.

“They normally would issue some reports, we want to see those reports before we start that process,” he said.

A lower dose of the Pfizer vaccine has been recommended for use in children aged five to 11 years old in the United States of America (USA).

Reuters reported further that the Pfizer and BioNTech companies, producing the Pfizer vaccine, said in September that their COVID-19 vaccine induced a robust immune response in the five to 11-year-olds in its clinical trial.

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