BC children ages 5 to 11 can now get vaccinated. This is what you need to know | The Canadian News

The first batch of children ages 5 to 11 in BC can now get vaccinated against COVID-19.

BC is the latest province to begin administering vaccines to children due to distribution challenges related to recent floods and distances to various corners of the province.

Here’s what you need to know if you want to vaccinate your child or if you haven’t made up your mind yet.

How many children are eligible to receive the vaccine?

Approximately 350,000 children between the ages of five and 11 are now eligible to receive the pediatric COVID-19 vaccine, and the youngest children are eligible on or after their fifth birthday.

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Is the pediatric vaccine different from that of those over 12 years of age?

The pediatric vaccine is a lower dose. During dosing studies, vaccine manufacturer Pfizer compared the adult dose, which is 30 micrograms, with several smaller doses. It concluded that a third of an adult dose, or 10 micrograms, gave as strong an immune response in younger children as the adult formulation.

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Who approved the vaccine for children?

Health Canada reviewed the research provided by Pfizer.

The responsibility of the independent regulator was to review the safety data on how well the vaccine works in children of that age and to review the manufacturing data.

“This rigorous and independent review can really give us confidence that, as approved by Health Canada, it is safe to use, and we can trust that in our children,” said Provincial Health Official Dr. Bonnie Henry, at a press conference last week. .

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Public health officials have said that children are less likely to become seriously ill from COVID. So why should they get vaccinated?

Henry said it is important for a variety of reasons, such as allowing children and their families to overcome some of the most serious pandemic disruptions, especially as the fourth wave paired with the Delta variant continues.

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Although BC has recorded few cases of hospitalization among children, children in this age group now account for 20 percent of current cases.

The vaccine also reduces the risk of transmission to close contacts of children, particularly those who are older or at risk for a more serious illness.

Where can I get more information about how the vaccine is safe for children?

The province has provided several online links to various experts talking about the safety of the vaccine. BC Children’s Hospital has provided this information sheet.

Have there been any adverse events in BC children ages 12 to 17 who received the vaccine?

Authorities have said that 133 adverse events have been recorded after vaccination of children in that age group. Most of them have been mild, such as a fever, a headache that lasts for several days, or a rash and swelling at the injection site.

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How can I register a child for the vaccine?

The province is asking parents and guardians to register their children ages 5 to 11 in their Get website vaccinated, by calling 1-833-838-2323 between 7 am and 7 pm Pacific time, seven days a week, or by visiting a BC Service Center.

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Once a child is registered, the province will notify the parent or guardian when it is time to reserve. Invitations are sent in the order of registration.

Where will children get the vaccine?

Both child-specific clinics and co-ed clinics will be available to vaccinate all eligible British Columbia residents.

There will be child-friendly and child-appropriate attributes in both spaces to ensure that children and their parents / guardians are comfortable. There will also be quiet places if a child has difficulties.

Since the mass vaccination clinics are no longer open, most of the pediatric clinics will be built in the facilities that the province is using for the booster campaign.

In some cases, the province will also use schools, although vaccines will not be administered during school hours.

Pharmacies will not be used to vaccinate children 5 to 11 years old.

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How soon will I be able to vaccinate my child?

Appointments began on Monday, November 29. The government expects to exceed this age group by the end of January.

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If I have more than one child, can they all get vaccinated at the same time?

Yes. It can take more than one child to get vaccinated at the same time.

Everyone should have their own appointment for the same day and clinic, but appointments do not need to be at the same time.

You can arrive at the clinic at any of the appointment times you have booked, and all family members will receive the vaccine at the same time.

For example, if you have two children to vaccinate after school on December 16:

  • Book an appointment for 3:30 pm on December 16
  • Book another appointment anytime available at the same clinic on December 16
  • Bring both children to your appointment at 3:30 pm

Can children show up alone or with friends to get their vaccine?

Children in the age range of five to 11 years require the consent of their parents, legal guardian, adoptive parent, or caregiver within the family, such as a grandparent. This can be a verbal consent given in the clinic.

As for whether another adult, such as a teacher, can bring a group of children to a clinic, they must bring a written consent with the contact information of their parents or guardians.

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Can I stop by a clinic if I don’t have an appointment?

No. The province will not allow walk-ins for the 5-11 age group.

If the parents are divorced or separated, how will consent work?

If the parents are divorced, separated or have never lived together and do not agree to vaccinate their child, the parent in favor of vaccination can go ahead and register as long as they are the guardian of the child under the Law of Right of family and have related parental responsibility. to give or refuse consent for medical and health-related treatment.

What should I do if my child is nervous about getting the vaccine?

The province has created various materials to help children and parents. This comic It is designed to help children feel safe getting the vaccine.

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Will children be required to show proof of vaccination at various locations once they have received the vaccine?

No, children ages five to 11 will not be part of the BC Vaccine Card program.

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