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Newsletter from the Coastal Health District (May 21, 2021)

The following information is courtesy of the Georgia Department of Public Health Coastal Health District

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Weekly Update for 5.21.21

Making the Case for Adolescent COVID-19 Vaccinations

When the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine was authorized for children as young as age 12 last week, teenagers and their parents quickly filled the Chatham County COVID-19 vaccination clinic during after-school hours.

But it's also understandable that some parents want to do a bit more research before making the decision to vaccinate their children. If you're still on the fence, we encourage you to discuss your concerns with your pediatrician or with us in public health. Check reputable websites like the CDC or American Academy of Pediatrics for answers to many of your questions.

We're not sure we can say it any better than the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, which outlined five reasons you should consider COVID-19 vaccine for your child. We paraphrase their comments below, and encourage you to visit the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia website for the full version.

1. Although most infections in children are mild, this is not always the case. Nearly 300 children have now died from COVID since last March. For context, this number is higher than the number of children who died yearly from diseases like measles and varicella before those vaccines were developed, and is higher than influenza as well.

2. Vaccines don't just prevent death, but also other health complications.COVID-19 can lead to multi-inflammatory syndrome in children or “MIS-C." This condition is rare but often severe and potentially fatal, and has already affected more than 3,000 children in the United States.

3. Vaccinating children helps build population immunity. Left unvaccinated, children might become important reservoirs for the virus that causes COVID-19, allowing the virus to mutate and continue to spread.

4. The first vaccine trials for adolescents showed a 100% efficacy rate against COVID-19 infection - even better than in adults. Teens also had a stronger antibody response than adults in the trial.

5. COVID-19 is not just a health concern - the illness can cause a major disruption in the lives and livelihoods of children and their families. Most children benefit from social interaction like school and extracurricular activities. Even an asymptomatic infection can lead to many days of missed school for children and missed work for parents. Having your child vaccinated means fewer disruptions, and your child can more safely resume the activities they love.

Read the full article here

 

The Coastal Health District is now scheduling appointments for special Pfizer vaccine clinics at 7 health department locations. Pfizer is the only COVID-19 vaccine currently authorized for individuals as young as 12 years of age.

The Pfizer clinics will be offered in Bryan, Camden, Effingham, Liberty, Long, and McIntosh Counties. Glynn and Chatham Counties already offer Pfizer during normal clinic hours.

Appointments are preferred and can be scheduled online at chdcovidvax.org or by calling 912-230-5506. Walk-ins are welcome, but subject to vaccine availability at the time of the clinic.

Bryan/Pembroke

  • Wed., June 2, 1-4 pm

Bryan/Richmond Hill

  • Tues., May 25, 1-4 pm

Camden/St. Marys

  • Wed., May 26, 1-4 pm

Effingham County

  • Fri., May 28, 8 am – 12 pm

Liberty County

  • Tues., May 25, 8:30-11:30 am

Long County

  • Tues., May 25, 1-4 pm

McIntosh County

  • Wed., May 26, 1-4 pm
 

Q: Am I permanently immune after getting vaccinated?

A: Because this is a new virus and these are new vaccines, we don’t yet know how long immunity will last and whether additional doses will be needed, as they are for the flu. The FDA and the scientists and health experts who developed the vaccines are continuing to study the virus and vaccines closely to understand how long immunity lasts and how well the vaccines protect against new mutations of the virus.

 

Let's Get Back to Worship

If you regularly attend a house of worship, the COVID-19 pandemic likely had a big impact on your congregational worship. Vaccination is the quickest, safest way to get back to the things we love, including gathering with our faith community. It's normal to have questions about the vaccine - we urge you to rely on trusted sources for information, like your family doctor, your health department, and the CDC. Click here for more information
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