COVID-19 vaccine available for children under 5 in Saskatchewan – Global News
Children between the ages of six months and five years old are now officially eligible for their COVID-19 vaccine in Saskatchewan.
“It kinda feels like the world forgot about the under fives when we opened up and they still couldn’t be vaccinated so it’s a massive relief.”
That was the comment from Dacey Grogan, who was able to get her nine month old daughter Brigid, her first COVID-19 vaccine Friday morning.
Aside from a tear or two right after the shot went into her leg, she handled it very well.
“Yeah she’s fine.. she cried for about two minutes and she’s totally over it,” Grogan said with a laugh.
As of 8 a.m. Friday morning, bookings for the vaccine opened up online at COVID-19 Vaccination | COVID-19 Vaccine | Government of Saskatchewan.
The province received a supply of around 13,000 doses of the vaccine in its first delivery on Thursday. A second shipment is expected to arrive in August, though the arrival date is not available yet.
Grogan said the roll out of Moderna’s shot for kids under five is lifting a weight off her chest.
“It feels like the moment we’ve been waiting for since she was born,” she said.
According to SHA, more than a thousand appointments were booked by 9 a.m. Friday.
Doctors say these shots come at a good time, with signs COVID-19 is on the rise again.
“We are seeing people in hospital, we are seeing people infected, wastewater shows levels are going up and there are places that have declared another wave,” said Dr. Ayisha Kurji, a pediatrician in Saskatoon.
Kurji said families should feel confident kids are getting the same level of protection as adults with their vaccine, as research has progressed through the different waves.
“It provided the same level of immune response as it did in the adults, which should tell us that the level of protection should be just the same as it was for (adults),” she said.
In Saskatchewan, pharmacists will not be able to provide immunizations for children under five. Rather, they will receive their vaccine via an SHA partnering agency provider.
This is the first COVID-19 vaccine approved for children below five, who until now could not be immunized against the virus. The vaccine will be administered in two doses, and a second dose can be provided 28 days after receiving the first dose.
This means children under five will have to get two shots to be considered fully vaccinated.
SHA said there are 70,000 children aged six months to four years in Saskatchewan that will need around 35,000 doses to match the uptick of the population of older children that has already been eligible.
Children who have had COVID-19 should wait eight weeks before getting the shot.
Immunocompromised children should wait four to eight weeks between infection and between doses and other children should wait eight weeks between doses.
And while the pandemic isn’t over, Kurji said this moment is a monumental one in the fight against COVID-19 with nearly the entire population now eligible to be vaccinated.
Saskatchewan to roll out COVID-19 vaccination for kids 6 months to 5 years old this week
© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
WDG Public Health reporting an increase in whooping cough cases – Kitchener.CityNews.ca
“I’m not surprised.”
Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) Chief Nursing Officer Rita Isley explained to CityNews 570 in an interview why she’s not at all shocked by the 50 per cent increase in whooping cough (or pertussis) cases in Wellington and Dufferin counties.
“The main reason why is that during the pandemic, we had multiple lockdowns, but we also had limited access to in-person visits with our primary care provider for a variety of reasons. With that happening, a lot of our [patients] needed to get routine vaccines and whooping cough is part of our routine vaccine schedule, particularly for children. We are expecting that, because they are behind, that we have lower immunity in our community.”
The total number of cases reported by WDGPH was 18, but that can rise quickly considering how easy the bacterial infection can spread.
The disease affects the respiratory tract, and starts with symptoms like runny nose and cough. It spreads through droplets that are sprayed when someone sneezes, coughs or even talks.
The illness can also get dangerous when the coughs get more frequent and severe. Isley said it can be difficult to catch your breath in between coughs, which can lead to gagging, vomiting or loud “whoops.”
Whooping cough can be especially serious for infants, children and those with compromised lungs. In severe cases, it can result in hospitalization or even death.
“This illness can last upwards of 6 to 20 days,” said Isley. “With this disease, what we’re looking for is a cold that lasts longer and a circumstance where the cough has started and it is continuing to get worse. Anyone that has symptoms that are staying the same up to 9-10 days really should be getting seen by their primary care provider.”
Luckily, the disease can be treated with a vaccine, and Isley encourages everyone, including pregnant women in their third trimester, to book appointments to stop the spread of the illness in the region.
Isley also asks that adults and children stay home with colds, and follow the usual public health unit advice of washing hands frequently, covering coughs and sneezes, and not sharing food and drinks.
The next community update with whooping cough case numbers is in the works and could come sometime this week.
If you need to get your child caught up on vaccinations, you can book a K-12 immunization appointment with WDGPH by calling 1-800-265-7293 ext. 7006.
Restrict junk food marketing to kids at grocery stores, restaurants: report – Global News
A new report that looks at the prevalence of marketing to children inside grocery stores and restaurants suggests regulation is needed to help reduce unhealthy food temptations.
The report funded by Heart and Stroke audited displays at more than 2,000 restaurants and 800 stores across Canada and says children may be bombarded with messages that make junk food seem appealing.
Researchers found nearly 53 per cent of stores had “junk food power walls” at checkout aisles, which it says are prime areas to market to kids because products are placed within their reach.
The research says that placement encourages “pester power” — when children nag or pester their parents to make impulse purchases.
University of Waterloo associate professor Leia Minaker says designs and themes such as “magic, adventure and zoo animals” are also commonly seen in beverage and ice cream fridges.
The report says healthy checkout aisle policies and prohibiting toy giveaways with children’s meals could help reduce consumption of unhealthy food.
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© 2023 The Canadian Press
Health unit suspends 1,900 students for incomplete immunization records – Windsor Star
More than 1,900 elementary school students in Windsor and Essex County have been suspended for out-of-date immunization records, the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit said Monday.
Parents must provide the health unit with an up-to-date immunization record for the suspension to be lifted and the student to return to school. Immunization clinics are available at both health unit locations in Windsor and Leamington on Monday and throughout this week, while immunization records are accepted in-person between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday at both locations.
Students who were suspended but attend and receive vaccinations at the health unit clinics, or who update their records with the health unit, will receive a notice and can return to school the same day.
Proof of immunization can also be submitted online at immune.wechu.org. Primary care providers can also send immunization records to the health unit at 519-258-7288.
The Immunization of School Pupils Act requires local health units to maintain and review vaccination records for all students and to enforce school suspensions if records are incomplete. These routine immunizations are often administered by primary care providers, but records must still be updated and on file with the health unit.
The review of student immunization records began in December 2022, when more than 12,000 students received notice their records were not up to date.
Earlier this month the health unit warned 3,200 students faced suspension for incomplete records; ultimately 1,908 were suspended on Monday, according to health officials.
Visit wechu.org/getimmunized for information and clinic times.
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