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B.C.’s top doctor expects B.C. children 5-11 can get COVID-19 vaccinations by holidays

Vaccines already approved in U.S., Israel
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B.C. children ages five to 11 may have the option of getting a COVID-19 vaccine shot by the holidays

B.C.’s top doctor says she expects children between the ages of five and 11 will be able to get their COVID-19 vaccine shots before the upcoming holidays.

Dr. Bonnie Henry emphasized during a Tuesday briefing that the jabs will not be mandatory.

“But it will give your children as much protection as possible,” she said.

Israel gave the OK to administering the Pfizer Inc. vaccine to children in that age group on Sunday, while U.S. authorities approved it earlier this month. Health Canada officials said last week they expect to make a decision on whether or not to approve the vaccine within one to two weeks.

This version of the vaccine has been designed specifically for children, which makes for smaller doses “and that will mean less pain and discomfort with the shots,” Henry said.

She’s been in contact with colleagues in the U.S. about their experiences administering the vaccines for this age group and noted that the vaccines are strongly effective.

Henry said once given approval in Canada, health officials will begin contacting parents who’ve already registered their children for the COVID-19 vaccinations.
“By registering now, your children likely, we expect, [will] be able to receive this vaccine before the upcoming holidays,” she said.

Henry also revealed B.C. has its first confirmed case of Delta variant of the sub-lineage AY4.2, which was first identified in the U.K.

She said officials are observing this sub-lineage to see if “they’re associated with less effectiveness of the vaccine.”

More to come …

torton@biv.com

@reporton