Some of Ottawa’s younger residents had the opportunity to roll up their sleeves for the COVID-19 vaccine on Friday as the next phase of the mass vaccination campaign began in the nation’s capital.
Hundreds of children ages five to 11 received their first COVID-19 vaccinations at Nepean Sportsplex and two other clinics in Ottawa on Friday, day one appointments available after the cohort became eligible for vaccination in early this month.
A total of seven mass vaccination clinics for children will be operating across the city starting Saturday and selected pharmacies listed on the Ottawa public health website They can also give the vaccines to people ages five to 11.
More than 27,000 children’s appointments were scheduled in the first 24 hours of eligibility on Tuesday, according to Dr. Vera Etches, Ottawa’s medical health officer. This represents more than a third of the 77,000 children in the five to 11 age range in Ottawa.
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Etches said there were a total of 60,000 citations posted between Friday and December 23.
OPH’s COVID-19 vaccination panel was updated on Friday to include the newly eligible demographic and show that 115 children born between 2010 and 2016 had already received the first doses of the vaccine, likely from sources outside the city.
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About 96 percent of youth ages 12 to 18 are considered to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Of the total Ottawa population, 80 percent received one injection, while 77 percent received two doses.
Meanwhile, OPH reported 47 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, as the number of active cases in the city rose to 318.
There are now 12 people in the local hospital with COVID-19 and no patients in the intensive care unit.
No new COVID-19 outbreaks were declared on Friday, but Carson Grove Elementary School in Gloucester has been closed due to an ongoing outbreak at the school.
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