482 new COVID infections, 5 deaths reported as vaccine rollout begins for kids ages 5-11


SAN DIEGO (CNS) – San Diego County public health officials Thursday reported 482 new cases of COVID-19 and five additional virus-related deaths, as parents of children age 5-11 began using a state website and hotline to find nearby vaccination sites.

Health care providers continue to administer vaccinations for children 5 to 11 years old for the coronavirus after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approved use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for them.

Only Pfizer’s vaccine is authorized for children age 5 to 17. The county Health and Human Services Agency recommends parents take their children ages 5 to 11 to their primary doctor.

However, the majority of county-operated COVID-19 vaccination sites also carry the Pfizer vaccine, as do many pharmacies, clinics and other medical providers. Parents became able to visit myturn.ca.gov or call the hotline at 833-422-4255 beginning Thursday to find a vaccination site.

Children in this younger age cohort will receive two doses three weeks apart. It will be administered with smaller needles and the doses will contain around one-third of the dosage being administered to older children and adults.

Parental consent is required prior to vaccination for anyone under the age of 18. In addition, minors must be accompanied to the vaccination appointment by a parent, guardian or caregiver to verify the child’s age and name.

State figures show San Diego County has 322,774 children ages 5-11.

Thursday’s data increased  the county’s cumulative totals to 373,181 cases and 4,246 fatalities since the pandemic began.

There were 290 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in the county as of Thursday, a decrease of two from Wednesday, according to the latest state figures. Of these, 82 people were in intensive care, down from 86 the previous day.

The number of county residents who have received at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine is now nearly 2.55 million — or 90.9% of residents 12 and older. More than 2.31 million, or 82.4% of that cohort, are fully vaccinated.

A total of 26,329 new tests were reported to the county on Thursday, and the percentage of new positive cases over the past week was 3.2%, according to the county health department.

Copyright 2021, City News Service, Inc.

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