Vaccinations of children aged 5-11 against COVID-19 will start on December 13, Waldemar Kraska, deputy head of the Ministry of Health, announced on Wednesday. By that date, vaccines intended for children are to be delivered to Poland. The Minister of Education and Science, Przemysław Czarnek, and the Minister of Health, Adam Niedzielski, sent a letter to parents and guardians, in which they provided data on vaccinations for children in this age group.
Deputy Minister of Health Waldemar Kraska spoke in the Sejm on Wednesday about vaccinating children aged 5-11. – From December 13 it will happen. We plan that dedicated vaccines will be delivered by that day [tej grupie wiekowej – przyp. red.] he announced.
Common testing of Poles
He also assured that universal testing of Poles would be introduced. – There was full consent to it and we will of course introduce it by ordinance – he said, referring to the arrangements of the Friday meeting in the Sejm with representatives of parliamentary circles and clubs. He specified that it is primarily about people who are most at risk of infection, e.g. medical staff, education and public administration employees, but also other groups.
– This possibility of testing yourself free of charge, without the consequences of going straight from the machine to quarantine, is very beneficial and we will introduce it. I think it is also very important that we can test people who even now have no symptoms but suspect that they have had contact with someone who was or is infected, he said.
He reminded that in Poland, diagnostic tests for the detection of coronavirus are carried out by 321 laboratories, which are able to perform about 200,000 per day. tests.
Education and health ministers write to parents and guardians
Also on Wednesday, the Minister of Education and Science, Przemysław Czarnek, and the Minister of Health, Adam Niedzielski, jointly sent parents and guardians a letter regarding the vaccination of children aged 5-11. They recalled that the European Medicines Agency (EMA) recommended vaccinations in this age group based on the results of clinical trials. “These are proven scientific data that prove the effectiveness and safety of the vaccine in the youngest” – they wrote.
“The recommendation of the European Medicines Agency launches the distribution of vaccines for children in the European Union. We expect the first deliveries in Poland already in mid-December. This means that we will be able to start vaccinating children aged 5-11 before Christmas. at that time, provide you – Parents and Guardians – with as much verified and reliable information as possible that will help you make a fully informed decision regarding the possible vaccination of your child “- we read further in the ministers’ letter.
Heads of MEiN and MZ with severe course in children
The heads of the ministries of science and health announced that “from the beginning of the epidemic in Poland, nearly 28.5 thousand children up to 10 years old and nearly 35 thousand children and adolescents between 11 and 20 years of age have been infected with the coronavirus”.
“Only in two weeks of November, nearly 500 children were admitted to hospitals with severe disease. Their average age is only 6 years” – they wrote. “At the same time, more than 1.6 million children and adolescents aged 12-17 years have been vaccinated against COVID-19. Adverse reactions after vaccination occurred in only 0.02% of them and were mostly mild. These data show that that out of the 1.6 million children vaccinated, only 320 of them experienced mild adverse reactions, a much smaller group than the group that was hospitalized for COVID-19 in just two weeks of November, “they added.
Czarnek and Niedzielski also informed that “nearly 2.3 thousand children in 94 centers around the world participated in a clinical trial conducted by the Pfizer / Biontech consortium”. “The presented study results show that in the group of vaccinated children aged 5-11 years, there was only one more severe side effect” – they reported. They explained that it was a fever of 39.7 degrees Celsius.
“Besides – as in the case of other vaccinations – pain at the injection site, redness, fatigue and headache appeared. Importantly, these symptoms disappeared very quickly and spontaneously. It is also worth paying special attention to the effectiveness of the vaccine in children. that it is higher than in adults and amounts to as much as 90.7 percent “- we read further in the letter.
“We hope that the information we have provided will help to make an informed decision about vaccinating children. We would like to emphasize that vaccines are not only effective protection, but also a chance to continue school education throughout the school year. The vaccinated pupil or preschooler misses the 10-day one. quarantine when there is a case of COVID-19 in the class or group. We encourage you to contact the employees of the Ministry of Health and the Chief Sanitary Inspector in case of additional questions or doubts “- the ministers wrote.
They added that more information can be found, among others, on the government’s immunization website or hotline 989.
Coronavirus vaccinations for children 5-11 years old
The European Commission has approved the Comirnata vaccine from Pfizer and BioNTech against COVID-19 for children aged 5 to 11 years after the European Medicines Agency (EMA) issued a positive recommendation. The EMA concluded that Comirnata’s benefits outweigh its risks in children 5-11 years of age, especially in diseases that increase the risk of developing severe COVID-19.
The vaccine dose for children of this age is to be lower (10 µg) than that used in people 12 years of age and older (30 µg). As with the older age group, it is given as two injections three weeks apart.
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