Kieran Moore Raywat Deonandan county Ontario city Ottawa covid-19 vaccine Health Kieran Moore Raywat Deonandan county Ontario city Ottawa

COVID-19 vaccine uptake for young Ontario children lower than experts had expected

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COVID-19 in Ontario is even lower than the relatively small numbers many experts had expected.Shots for the youngest age group have been available for two months, but only about six per cent of those kids have had their first dose.Ontario’s chief medical officer of health, Dr.

Kieran Moore, said that is lower than the numbers he thought he would see by this point.“I certainly want more families to consider immunizing their children from six months to four years of age,” in particular, children at high risk, he said in an interview.

Ontario begins offering bivalent COVID vaccines to most vulnerable “We know we have a higher percentage than five per cent of children with an underlying medical illness that may predispose them to having a worse outcome associated with COVID and would absolutely encourage those parents to consider having a conversation with your health-care provider regarding the risks and benefits.”Raywat Deonandan, an epidemiologist and associate professor in the faculty of health sciences at the University of Ottawa, said there are a lot of factors at play that likely feed into a low uptake, but he still would have expected a higher number by now.“I’m not surprised it’s low, I’m surprised it’s this low,” he said.Many people believe false narratives that the pandemic is over and that kids don’t get sick when they’re infected with COVID-19, said Deonandan, who also pointed to misinformation about side-effects of the vaccine.The way that messages about the safety and efficacy of the vaccine get communicated to parents matters, Deonandan said.

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