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Idaho kids 12-15 can get Pfizer vaccine

| May 13, 2021 1:00 AM

Idaho’s kids ages 12 to 15 can begin receiving the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine immediately, the Department of Health and Welfare said Wednesday.

With this recommendation, 85 percent of all Idahoans are eligible for the vaccine.

“PHD will tentatively begin vaccinating those 12-15 by Monday, May 17,” wrote Katherine Hoyer, Panhandle Health District spokeswoman. “We need to prepare our clinics to ensure we have all safety equipment and training done for staff to administer to this younger age group.”

She wrote that if PHD is able to begin sooner, it will make an announcement. Other enrolled providers may start sooner if they are able.

 The Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency-use authorization for the Pfizer vaccine among children in this age group on Monday, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommended it at its meeting Wednesday.

The ACIP also revised guidance on co-administration of routine vaccines with COVID-19 vaccine, removing the 14-day minimum before or after a COVID-19 vaccine to receive any other vaccine. 

“Children can spread COVID-19 inadvertently because their symptoms are often so mild, so this safe and effective vaccine is a critical next step to stopping the spread of COVID-19 in Idaho,” said Dr. Christine Hahn, public health medical director and state epidemiologist. “We hope parents will choose to get their children vaccinated so we can keep schools open in the fall and children engaged in their extracurricular activities.”

PHD reported 54 new COVID-19 cases on Monday and one death attributed to the virus. That brings the total deaths attributed to the virus to 304 in the PHD, and total cases to 24,027, with 23,709 of those considered closed, according to PHD’s website. That leaves 318 active cases, which is .12 of the state’s population

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