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Yavapai County health officials say they’re ready to distribute COVID-19 vaccine to children ages 5-11 amid federal approval

COTTONWOOD — Soon children ages 5 to 11 will be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccination and Yavapai County Community Health Services announced Friday that they’re ready for it.

Officials with the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are scheduled to meet Nov. 2 and Nov. 3 to potentially give their formal approval of the vaccine for children.

Within hours of that approval, millions of doses are expected to be shipped to providers across the country. Smaller needles and the low-dose shots for children will be included for roughly 28 million children.

“Yavapai County is ready to vaccinate children as young as 5, pending federal approval,” YCCHS Assistant Director Carol Lewis said Friday, Oct. 22, in a statement. “We should hear a final decision regarding authorization [soon]. YCCHS will partner with local clinics and pediatrician offices for distribution.”

White House COVID-19 Coordinator Jeff Zients told the Associated Press on Thursday, Oct. 21, that they plan to ensure vaccinations for kids ages 5 to 11 are “available, easy and convenient.”

“We’re going to be ready, pending the FDA and CDC decision,” Zients said.

The Pfizer vaccine will be the dose approved for children, which requires two doses three weeks apart for full protection. That could mean the first line of kids to receive the vaccine will be full covered by Christmas.

Lewis said the following clinics in the Verde Valley will have the vaccine for children:

  • Spectrum Healthcare, 651 Mingus Ave., Cottonwood

  • YCCHS, 10 S. 6th St., Cottonwood

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The CDC recently announced that fully vaccinated people who have come into contact with a person suspect or confirmed COVID-19 should be tested five-to-seven days following the date of exposure, according to a news release.

The potentially exposed person should also wear a mask in public indoor settings for up to 14 days, or until they receive a negative test result.

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This COVID-19 dashboard is maintained by Yavapai County Community Health Services. It may not always reflect current updated numbers or match posted Arizona Department of Health Services data. For more county COVID-19 data visit https://www.yavapai.us/chs. For state data visit https://www.azdhs.gov/covid-19. (YCCHS/Courtesy)

YAVAPAI COUNTY

Yavapai County health officials on Friday reported 417 new COVID-19 cases and one death since Monday, Oct. 18.

The county has tested 93,687 residents for COVID-19 in the past six months, and there have been 27,866 positive cases and

683 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.

The Verde Valley Medical Center in Cottonwood reported 15 new COVID-19 patients, while the Yavapai Regional Medical Center campuses in Prescott and Prescott Valley reported 41 new patients. The Prescott VA reported two.

The county is still experiencing high transmission of COVID-19 with a 13.8% positivity and 208 cases per 100,000 residents for the week ending Oct. 10, according to YCCHS.

Follow Brian M. Bergner Jr. on Twitter and Facebook at @52MediaWorks. Email him at bbergner@verdenews.com, or call 928-634-2241, ext. 6033.

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