Owensboro Health Regional Hospital and Owensboro Health Muhlenberg Community Hospital are now scheduling vaccine appointments for children ages 5-11. The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine will be offered to this age group on select Tuesdays starting Nov. 16 from 4-7 p.m.
Appointments are required and can be scheduled at OwensboroHealth.org/Vaccine, in MyChart or by calling 270-685-7100, option 6.
As of Monday morning, there were 29 patients (23 unvaccinated) hospitalized with COVID-19 at OHRH. Of those, 10 (9 unvaccinated) were in critical care and 10 (9 unvaccinated) were intubated.
The CDC announced earlier this month that it recommends the 5-11 group be vaccinated against COVID-19 with the Pfizer vaccine.
According to the CDC announcement, “The spread of the Delta variant resulted in a surge of COVID-19 cases in children throughout the summer. During a 6-week period in late June to mid-August, COVID-19 hospitalizations among children and adolescents increased fivefold.”
The announcement continued, “Similar to what was seen in adult vaccine trials, vaccination was nearly 91 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 among children aged 5-11 years. In clinical trials, vaccine side effects were mild, self-limiting, and similar to those seen in adults and with other vaccines recommended for children. The most common side effect was a sore arm.”
Owensboro Health Children’s Center pediatrician Dr. Rebekah Booth said earlier this month that the pediatric dose is about one-third of the normal adult dose.
“This may make many parents more comfortable with getting children vaccinated since there is less likelihood of children developing an intense immune reaction to the vaccine that could result in conditions such as myocarditis,” she said.
OH Director for Outpatient Pharmacy BC Childress said earlier this month that the preventable hospitalizations and fatalities related to COVID-19 in children are greater than any vaccine’s adverse effects, such as myocarditis.
“No cases of myocarditis or pericarditis were reported in the clinical trial for children ages 5–11 years (over 3,000 patients),” she said. “Furthermore, the risk of myocarditis or pericarditis after receipt of a COVID-19 vaccine is lower than the risk of myocarditis associated with COVID infection in adolescents and adults. When voting on the approval, many CDC committee members noted that their decision was influenced by the fact that there have been zero deaths linked to myocarditis from the COVID-19 Vaccine. The benefits of vaccination in this population heavily outweigh the risks.”
To hear more from local pediatricians about the COVID-19 vaccine, click here.