Vaccinate your kids for their own good, Legault tells parents

Quebec’s prime minister announced that COVID-19 vaccination for children ages five to 11 begins Wednesday at vaccination centers and in schools next week.

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Quebec Prime Minister François Legault urges parents to vaccinate their children ages five to 11 starting Wednesday, and not just to protect their elders, but for their own good.


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“It is useful to vaccinate children for three reasons,” the prime minister said in his COVID-19 update in Quebec City on Tuesday. “First, although children are less likely to get sick (with COVID-19), we have seen that some of them (develop) severe symptoms and even long-term effects. Second, vaccination will help us keep our schools open. And third, the children will be able to hug their grandparents safely ”during the holidays.

The vaccination of this age group begins on Wednesday in centers throughout the province by appointment for parents who wish to accompany their children. Mobile vaccination units will go to schools starting next week.

By mid-afternoon on Tuesday, which was the first day appointments were made available on the Clic Santé website, more than 80,000 children had already registered for the jab. Legault expressed satisfaction with this response, which exceeds 12% of the 650,000 Quebecers in that age group.


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Legault emphasized that extensive testing has been done on the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to ensure that it is safe for the five to 11-year-old age group.

“The dose that children will receive is about a third of the dose that is given to adults. Scientists believe it is safe. This is very important. But it’s normal for some parents to still say to themselves, ‘Well, I’m worried. We are talking about our children. ‘ “

He urged parents to consult the website for information, and said they are also welcome to ask any questions they want to health professionals in vaccination centers and schools.

The prime minister also stressed that no child will be vaccinated at school without the written consent of their parents. Information sheets and consent forms will be sent to parents beginning Wednesday.


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Daniel Paré, director of the vaccination program in Quebec, answers questions during a press conference on the COVID-19 pandemic at the legislature in Quebec City, Tuesday, November 23, 2021.
Daniel Paré, director of the vaccination program in Quebec, answers questions during a press conference on the COVID-19 pandemic at the legislature in Quebec City, Tuesday, November 23, 2021. Photo by Jacques Boissinot /The Canadian Press

The director of Quebec’s vaccination campaign, Daniel Paré, said the fact that appointments are already scheduled for December is a good sign. “Our vaccination centers are ready. This is great news. The system is working fine. “

Health Minister Christian Dubé said the province is beginning to vaccinate children by appointment at the centers, but that no family will be turned away if a child in the family has an appointment and they bring another to be vaccinated there. weather.

“One of the reasons we started with dates rather than without them is that it is the beginning of winter, so we don’t want long lines of people waiting outside,” he said.

The government hopes to give a first dose to all children whose parents give their consent before Christmas. The second dose will be given eight weeks later. Children under the age of 12 will not be required to have a vaccination passport, Dubé added.


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Legault said he hopes to loosen mask mandates at school in the new year if a certain percentage of children are vaccinated. He did not specify that percentage, although he said it would be less than 80 percent. He said he is avoiding making such statements because he does not want to pressure indecisive parents or intimidate children who take longer to get vaccinated.

He said cases are increasing in Quebec, but noted that the situation is much better here than in the United States, where there are six times more hospitalizations per million residents than here.

Quebec on Tuesday reported 699 new COVID-19 cases and five deaths. There were 203 hospitalizations, of which 46 were in intensive care.

“Cases are increasing in Quebec and we expect it to continue and there is a small increase in hospitalizations … but it is nothing like what we are seeing in Europe and the United States,” Legault said. He attributed that situation to the higher vaccination rate here, and thanked once again the 80 percent of Quebecers who are fully vaccinated. He said the vaccine passport has also helped, as has Quebec’s decision to wait eight weeks, instead of four, between the first and second doses.


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Quebec has administered third doses of the vaccine to residents of all CHSLDs and is still administering them in nursing homes (RPA). Anyone age 70 or older who received their second dose more than six months ago can now make an appointment for their third dose. A third dose has not been considered necessary for people under 70 years of age unless they are immunosuppressed.

Legault said he is confident that the rules on indoor gatherings in private residences will be lowered during the holidays. But for now, he pleaded with Quebecers to limit indoor gatherings to a maximum of 10 people.

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