The statement below is by Commissioner Director Louis Cappelli Jr. on the announcement by Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech on the efficacy of its vaccine for ages 5 to 11.
“Today’s announcement is another positive step in getting our community closer to a post pandemic world by giving us the ability to inoculate more friends and neighbors from COVID-19. We know that we only have a couple of strong tools to delivering us back to a way of life we still long for and the vaccine is by far and away the most important tool in that fight. Furthermore, at this point we have seen 260 students throughout the county who have contracted the virus. The need for a vaccine in this age range and population is critical for our community and while none of these known cases have been tracked back to the classroom, sports and other activities have been key transmission spots that we have tracked.
As we continue to watch case counts rise, younger and younger residents are growing into the primary transmitters of the virus to their unvaccinated peers. We have seen more than 30% of our new cases come from school age children, being under the age of 18. The new use of the Pfizer vaccine will now allow us, when emergency use is provided by the FDA, to protect most of those kids and students from COVID-19.
At this point, if the data supports the announcement, we are only weeks away from making this lifesaving vaccine available to all of our students throughout the county and again getting us one step closer to being on the other side of this virus. That said, the unvaccinated adult or child are still the most likely to get COVID and transmit, so if you are an adult that still has not gotten the vaccine for some unknown reason, please get it now.”