COVID Update: More recommendations for vaccinating youth
VERDE VALLEY – Centers for Disease Control & Prevention is recommending that children age 5-11 who have a moderately to severely weakened immune system get an additional dose of the Pfizer vaccine at least 28 days after their second dose.
According to information released by Yavapai County Community Health Services, that includes recipients of organ or stem-cell transplants, people receiving active cancer treatment, people with advanced or untreated HIV infection, people who are taking medications that weaken the immune system and others.
CDC has expanded recommendations for booster shots to adolescents and teens age 12-17 who received a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. They can get their booster at least five months after completing their primary Pfizer series.
Yavapai County reports 486 new COVID-19 cases and two deaths from Friday to Monday. The county has tested 120,803 residents for COVID-19 in the past six months, and there have been 38,222 positive cases and 994 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic. Yavapai Regional Medical Center reports 55 COVID patients, VVMC reports 19 patients, and the VA reports five patients.
Two COVID monoclonal antibody products – Regeneron and BAM/Ete – are not effective against the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus. Dignity Health, Yavapai Regional Medical Center (YRMC) is no longer administering Regeneron and BAM/Ete treatments based on current recommendations due to the high proportion of Omicron cases present in Arizona.
YRMC will continue to offer Sotrovimab COVID monoclonal antibody treatments, which have shown to be effective against the Omicron variant. The supply of Sotrovimab is severely depleted and will be administered to only the highest risk patients based on availability.
YCCHS is supporting a free testing program being put on by Cottonwood Fire Department at their station located at 199 S. Sixth St. on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Now through Feb. 1. Testing will be done on a first come, first serve basis. Drive through testing will be set up at the entrance of the parking lot off East Aspen Street and exiting onto South Sixth Street.
According to data from the CDC, the United States averaged 1,290 COVID-related deaths per day, January-November 2021, making it the third leading cause of death for the year. Deaths by influenza and pneumonia were down 19% compared to the pre-pandemic year of 2019. Other non-COVID respiratory ailments, chronic or otherwise, were up.
The leading cause of death, heart disease, has increased by 16% compared to 2019, based on the daily averages. This year there was also a rise in daily death rate by stroke, diabetes and accidents. The national rate of deaths from cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and even suicide have remained about the same.