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Pfizer vaccine approved for kids in Canada

By Richmond Sentinel

Published 4:55 PST, Fri November 19, 2021

Health Canada has approved Pfizer’s COVID-19 pediatric vaccine for kids aged five to 11—news that B.C. welcomes, according to a joint statement from provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix.

"The rigorous review confirms that this first vaccine formulated for younger children is safe and effective. We also welcome the recommendations from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization on use of this new lower-dose vaccine to provide protection to children from five to 11 years of age. We look forward to making the pediatric vaccine available for 360,000 young British Columbians as soon as possible,” said Henry and Dix.

"While children are at a lower risk of severe disease from COVID-19, it can still result in serious outcomes in some children, including hospitalization and long-term symptoms. As well, as we have seen over the past 20 months, the pandemic has had a tremendous impact on children and families and has led to significant disruptions to important social activities and school. Health Canada's approval of the vaccine for children is another important step that will help protect children from COVID-19 and help us safely get back to many important activities.”

They encouraged B.C. parents and guardians to register their children to get vaccinated online at www.getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca or by calling 1 833 838-2323 toll-free. Over 75,000 children are already registered and on the list to be contacted to book an appointment.

"British Columbia will have enough vaccine for every child aged five to 11, and we will be ready to start welcoming children to clinics throughout the province soon after we receive our supply of pediatric vaccines from the Government of Canada,” said Dix and Henry.

More information will be shared early next week about B.C.’s plan to vaccinate children.

Health officials also reported 497 new cases of COVID-19 today. Since the pandemic began, B.C. has recorded 214,636 cases.

Of the new cases, 64 are in the Vancouver Coastal Health region (including Richmond), 138 in the Fraser Health region, 71 in the Island Health region, 146 in the Interior Health region, 78 in the Northern Health region and no new cases of people who reside outside of Canada.

There are 3,420 active cases of COVID-19 in B.C. and 358 of those people are hospitalized, 109 of whom are in intensive care. 

To date, 8,509,185 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in B.C.; 4,034,962 of those are second doses. 

This means that 91.2 per cent of adults and 90.8 per cent of people aged 12 and older have received their first dose of a vaccine. In addition, 87.6 per cent of adults and 87.0 per cent of those aged 12 and older have received two doses.

Sadly, there were three new virus-related deaths reported today, bringing that total to 2,293. Of those who died, one lived in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, one in the Fraser Health region and one in the Northern Health region.

Health authorities reported one new healthcare facility outbreak and declared one over. Active outbreaks continue at 12 long-term care facilities, four assisted or independent living facilities and five acute care facilities.

From Nov. 11 to 17, people not fully vaccinated accounted for 59.5 per cent of cases.
From Nov. 4 to 17, they accounted for 70.4 per cent of hospitalizations.

Past week cases (Nov. 11 to 17)—Total 2,853

• Not vaccinated: 1,564 (54.8 per cent)

• Partially vaccinated: 135 (4.7 per cent)

• Fully vaccinated: 1,154 (40.4 per cent)

Past two weeks cases hospitalized (Nov. 4 to 17)—Total 325

• Not vaccinated: 200 (61.5 per cent)

• Partially vaccinated: 29 (8.9 per cent)

• Fully vaccinated: 96 (29.5 per cent)

Past week, cases per 100,000 population after adjusting for age (Nov. 11 to 17)

• Not vaccinated: 203.3

• Partially vaccinated: 57.8

• Fully vaccinated: 26.2

Past two weeks, cases hospitalized per 100,000 population after adjusting for age (Nov. 4 to 17)

• Not vaccinated: 41.7

• Partially vaccinated: 18.6

• Fully vaccinated: 2.1

For the latest medical updates, including case counts, prevention, risks and to find a testing centre near you: http://www.bccdc.ca/ or follow @CDCofBC on Twitter.

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