Maritime provinces prepare for arrival of childrens' COVID-19 vaccine doses
The first shipment of pediatric doses of COVID-19 vaccine landed in Canada Sunday night.
The delivery comes after Health Canada approved the Pfizer vaccine for children aged five to 11 last week.
“Coming from two vaccinated parents, we are pretty excited for the vaccine to be approved for a child,” says parent Holly Green.
The pediatric doses are a third of the size of what's given to people over the age of 12.
Public health says the shots will be administered at least eight weeks apart.
According to the Nova Scotia COVID-19 dashboard, the under 11 age group is the cohort with the third most cases of COVID-19, behind 20-39 and 40-59 year olds.
“We’ve been pretty open about it and about us being vaccinated and what it helps us to do. We love to travel, he loves to travel so, that will make a difference for him as well,” Green says.
As for the rollout, health officials in New Brunswick say the first shipment of Pfizer vaccine for children is expected to arrive in the province Tuesday.
The first doses are expected to be administered before the end of the week through community clinics and pharmacies. About 54,500 children will be eligible in New Brunswick to receive the vaccine.
In Nova Scotia, officials say information on distribution will be released at a later date.
On Prince Edward Island, Dr. Heather Morrison, the province's chief public health officer, announced that kids will be able to get the vaccine at both community and school-based clinics.
“Only children with consent forms signed by a parent or legal guardian will be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in school,” Morrison said on Thursday.
The head of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union is encouraged by the security that will come with having younger students vaccinated, but Paul Wozney says he is also hesitant to have the shots given at school.
“I think perhaps there’s a little bit of reticence to do this program in schools where teachers and principals who have nothing to do with giving the vaccine could be in the middle of controversy about the vaccine,” says Wozney.
The federal procurement minister expects 2.9 million pediatric doses of COVID-19 vaccine to arrive in Canada by the end of the week.