SANTA ANA, Calif. (CNS) – When children ages 5-11 got their first vaccinations for COVID-19 on Thursday, hospital admissions rose to over 200 patients.
Hospital admissions rose from 198 Wednesday to 215 Thursday, with the number of ICU patients increasing from 46 to 51.
What you need to know
- Orange County made pediatric COVID vaccines available on Thursday
- COVID-19 hospital stays increased from 198 Wednesday to 215 Thursday
- The number of intensive care patients rose from 46 to 51
- The case rate per 100,000 unvaccinated population was 15.7 on October 23 and rose to 17.5 on October 30, the latest data available
Orange County has 21.7% of its ICU beds and 68% of its ventilators.
The county also added 292 more infections, bringing the cumulative number to 306,274, and recorded three more deaths, bringing the cumulative death toll to 5,612.
On Wednesday morning, the Working Group on the Scientific Safety Review of the Western States announced its approval for the emergency use of Pfizer vaccine for children ages 5-11 through the United States Centers for Disease Control to the governors of the western states, including California.
Dr. Dan Cooper, a pediatrician at UC Irvine’s Department of Immunology, said he advises parents to get their children vaccinated. However, he makes sure to tell reluctant parents to at least think about it. He does not favor any mandates.
“I’d like to try getting parents to get the vaccine first,” Cooper told New Sources. “It’s a delicate situation. You make a decision about someone else, not about yourself.”
Cooper noted that “because it’s less severe,” a problem in children, “we have a little more air to breathe”.
He said a third of his patients’ parents want their children to be vaccinated right away, a third are reluctant but open-minded, and another third are simply against it.
His practice primarily caters to low-income Latino families, and many parents “are so affected by the disease that they want their children to be vaccinated as soon as possible”.
But there is more hesitation in communities that are not as badly hit by COVID-19, Cooper said.
Cooper noted that while COVID-19 hasn’t had that much of an impact on children, it doesn’t mean they’re not at risk of the disease.
“I’m not buying the data that is completely harmless in children because it isn’t,” Cooper said. “There will be children with no underlying illnesses who will get very sick.”
Nor do the experts know what long-term effects COVID-19 could have on some children.
Cooper did a lot of research on the childhood obesity epidemic, saying that obese children are not only more prone to having serious symptoms but are also given less protection from the vaccines.
“It’s just as true in children as it is in adults,” said Cooper. “I hope one of the lessons from this whole thing is that we need to resume our efforts to deal with obesity and inactivity in children. It’s an epidemic. “
The number of fully vaccinated Orange County’s residents rose from 2,177,053 last Thursday to 2,190,754 this week.
That number includes an increase from 2,032,863 to 2,045,291 residents who received two-dose vaccines from Pfizer or Moderna. The number of residents who received the one-time Johnson & Johnson vaccine rose from 144,190 to 145,463.
There are 185,936 residents who received a dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.
The leading suppliers of vaccines are OCHCA with 26%, CVS with 19%, Walgreens with 6%, Kaiser Permanente with 5%, UC Irvine Health with 3%, Walmart with 2%, Safeway, Vons and Pavilions with 1%, Families Together Orange County with 1% and several others also with 1%.
Orange County’s weekly averages of COVID-19 cases and positivity rates rose after several weeks of gradual decline, according to data released Tuesday by the Orange County Health Department.
The county’s weekly COVID-19 case rate per 100,000 population rose from 6 to 7.2, while the test positive rate rose from 2.3% to 2.5%. The county’s health equity quartile positivity rate – which measures progress in low-income communities – increased from 2.3% to 2.4%.
The fall rate among the unvaccinated has increased significantly, and a slight increase was also noted among the vaccinated, according to the OCHCA.
The case rate per 100,000 unvaccinated population was 15.7 on October 23 and rose to 17.5 on October 30, the latest data available. For fully vaccinated residents, it was 3.4 per 100,000 residents on October 23 and 3.6 on October 30.
The three deaths logged on Thursday occurred in October, bringing the death toll to 59 last month.
The death toll in September stands at 167, just off the August figure of 172.
In contrast, the death toll before the more contagious surge in the Delta variant was 29 in July, 19 in June, 26 in May, 46 in April, 200 in March, 615 in February, 1,585 in January – the deadliest month of the pandemic – and 977 for December, the next deadliest.