By Pam Wright
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Health Canada has approved the COVID-19 shot for children age five to 11 years and it’s welcome news for Chatham-Kent’s Medical Officer of Health.
Dr. David Colby called the vaccine’s approval “a major step forward.
“Not only will it protect the vaccinated children and keep them in school, but it will also help prevent them from transmitting infection to younger siblings and others,” Colby said.
But it remains to be seen how many youngsters will be getting the jab.
The Ministry of Health booking system for shots was expected to go live Tuesday, with Chatham-Kent Public Health expected to release its plans as well.
Of the 12-17-year-old demographic, 76 per cent have received one shot with 70 per cent of those eligible receiving being fully immunized.
The lowest vaccination group in the population is the 18 to 29 year demographic with only 67 per cent of those eligible getting two doses. A total of 72 per cent have received one dose.
Small outbreaks continue to pop up. Last week saw outbreaks declared at Tilbury Manor Nursing Home with three cases, as well as three Chatham elementary schools with no more than three cases apiece.
There was also a recent outbreak at a local place of worship that grew to 13 cases.
As for booster shots, about 2,200 residents – 1,500 of those are 70 years and up – have received a third dose. Uptake is expected to increase in December as more supply becomes available.