Parents of Peachtree Park Pediatrics,
We continually strive to provide you with the most up to date information on the COVID-19 pandemic. Read on for the latest news regarding booster doses, the benefits of receiving the vaccine while pregnant, trick-or-treating safely, and more.
Booster Doses Approved for Some
“The CDC has endorsed booster shots for millions of older or otherwise vulnerable Americans, opening a major new phase in the U.S vaccination drive against COVID-19.
Boosters should be offered to people 65 and older, nursing home residents and those ages 50 to 64 who have risky underlying health problems. The extra dose would be given once they are at least six months past their last Pfizer shot.”
The CDC also said “that people can get a booster if they are ages 18 to 64 years and are health-care workers or have another job that puts them at increased risk of being exposed to the virus.
CDC Director Rachel Walensky said “that such a move aligns with an FDA booster authorization decision earlier this week.” She also stressed that the real issue remains getting first shots to the unvaccinated. “We will not boost our way out of this pandemic,” she warned.
President Joe Biden said recently that booster shots to protect against the coronavirus will be free and easily accessible.
PPP will offer booster doses to our physicians and staff who received the Pfizer vaccine as well as patients or family members who meet the criteria. There are no recommendations yet on booster doses for those who received the Moderna or J & J vaccines.
Masking in Schools Reduces Risk of Outbreaks
Two recent CDC studies “provide additional evidence that masks protect children from the coronavirus, even when community rates are high and the contagious Delta variant is circulating.”
One study “found that schools that did not require staff and students to wear masks were 3.5 times as likely to have a virus outbreak as schools that required universal masking.
A second study looked at infections among all children in 520 different counties across the United States, and found that once the public school year started, pediatric cases increased at a far higher rate in counties where schools did not require masks.”
Most children two and older can comfortably wear a mask during the school day. Parents should model good mask etiquette by encouraging all family members to wear a mask covering the nose and mouth.
Babies of Vaccinated Mothers Have High Antibody Levels
A recent study showed that “Infants born to mothers who received the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine had high levels of protective antibodies.”
“What’s new about this study is that we were able to demonstrate that the antibodies the mother builds to the vaccine cross the placenta and go to the baby, and have the potential of protecting the baby in the first days of life from getting SARS-CoV-2” commented a specialist in maternal fetal medicine.
The CDC also says that “vaccinating against COVID does not increase the risk of miscarriage or birth defects,” as reported by CNBC.
Following guidance from ACOG, AAP and the CDC, PPP recommends that all pregnant women and nursing mothers receive the COVID vaccine. We are happy to provide the Pfizer vaccine at our office.
Birth Rate Increasing After Pandemic Drop
“While there has been a decline in births in the U.S. during the pandemic, a new report released by the U.S. Census Bureau suggests the drop may have turned a corner last March as births started rebounding.” See AP News – Report: Births decline in pandemic may have turned corner
“The decline in births was most noticeable at the end of 2020 and beginning of 2021. In December 2020, births in the U.S. were down 7.7% from the previous year, and they were down 9.4% last January compared to the previous January.”
Trick or Treating Safely
The CDC director thinks children can safely enjoy Halloween and “recommended trick-or-treating outside, limiting crowds and avoiding crowded Halloween parties.”
“’I certainly hope so,’ Walensky said when asked whether it’s safe for children to go trick-or-treating this year. ‘If you’re able to be outdoors, absolutely,’ she said.”
We love to see pictures of our patients in costumes, especially when dressed as doctors or nurses!
CHOA Physicians Promoting Vaccine
Our colleagues from Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta discuss the COVID-19 vaccine in this video, recommending it for everyone who is eligible.
We encourage everyone to continue to use good hand hygiene and practice social distancing as much as possible. Please contact our office with any further questions or concerns.
Peachtree Park Pediatrics
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Peachtree Park Pediatrics strives to deliver up-to-date primary care to our infant, child, and young adult patients in a welcoming and family-friendly environment. The practice has deep roots in the Atlanta community, and it is our continued honor to be entrusted with the health care of our next generation.