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 vaccine updates, holiday safety tips, and more.
Celebrating the 4th of July Safely
In 2020, spikes in COVID-19 cases occurred throughout the country following the 4th of July celebration, linked to family events where mask wearing and social distancing are less likely to be practiced.
As you celebrate the 4th this year, avoid large gatherings, especially if there are children under 12 at home or other family members who have not been vaccinated.
Teens Should be Vaccinated Despite Rare Heart Risk
NBC News reports that the CDC, AAP and other medical organizations agree that “the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination far outweigh the risks of heart inflammation in young people.”
“The mRNA COVID-19 vaccines can, in rare instances, be linked to inflammation of the heart or surrounding tissue, called myocarditis or pericarditis.
But the risk of Covid-19 is far higher: Teens and young adults account for the largest proportion of new cases in the United States.”
The statement from the AAP and other medical groups said:
“The facts are clear: Myocarditis is an extremely rare side effect, and only an exceedingly small number of people will experience it after vaccination. Importantly, for the young people who do, most cases are mild, and individuals recover often on their own or with minimal treatment. In addition, we know that myocarditis and pericarditis are much more common if you get COVID-19, and the risks to the heart from COVID-19 infection can be more severe.
The vaccines are safe and effective, and they prevent COVID-19 illness. They will help protect you and your family and keep your community safe. We strongly encourage everyone age 12 and older who are eligible to receive the vaccine under Emergency Use Authorization to get vaccinated, as the benefits of vaccination far outweigh any harm.
We recommend getting vaccinated right away if you haven’t yet. It is the best way to protect yourself, your loved ones, your community, and to return to a more normal lifestyle safely and quickly.”
Nearly all COVID Deaths in US are Now Among Unvaccinated
AP reports that “nearly all COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. now are in people who weren’t vaccinated, a staggering demonstration of how effective the shots have been and an indication that deaths per day — now down to under 300 — could be practically zero if everyone eligible got the vaccine.”
More than 10% Miss 2nd Dose of Vaccine
CNN reports that “a growing number of people — now more than one in 10 — have missed their second dose of Covid-19 vaccine in the United States, a cause for concern as the more transmissible Delta variant gains a foothold.”
Where Vaccination is Up, COVID-19 Cases are Down
A recent CNN analysis found that “states that have fully vaccinated more than half of their residents tend to have lower-than-average case rates that are trending down, while states that have vaccinated less than half of their residents had higher average case rates.”
“Each of the states that saw an increase in cases over the past seven days compared to the week before has fully vaccinated less than half of their residents, and most have vaccinated less than 40% of residents.”
Low Reinfection Rate
HealthDay reports that less than 1% of people with severe COVID-19 infection get reinfected.
“Only 0.7% of patients with severe COVID-19 infection contracted the virus a second time, with a mean re-infection period of 116 days. Of those who were re-infected, 3.2% died.”
Children’s Birthday Parties may have Fueled COVID Spread
USA Today reports on a study which showed that “in counties with high rates of transmission, households were 31% more likely to test positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 within two weeks after someone had a birthday.”
Informal gatherings, like birthday parties, are an important source of transmission as families often relax when in their own home.
Pandemic Baby Bust
HealthDay reports that the pandemic has triggered a deep drop in U.S. births.
“Until 2020, the birth rate had been declining about 2% a year, but that rate dropped to 4% with the start of the pandemic, researchers from the CDC found.
When you take that one step further and look at the decline across 2020, there were greater declines in the second half of the year — 6% versus the first part of the year.
Based on what happened in the 1918 flu pandemic, researchers expect the drop in the birth rate to continue, possibly into 2022. It may take another year or two for people to have the confidence in having families.”
Rashes Rare After Vaccination
HealthDay reports on a study showing that “rashes, itchiness and other skin problems can develop after people receive COVID-19 vaccines, but such problems are rare and go away quickly.”
“In all, 1.9% of survey respondents reported a skin reaction — most commonly rash and itching beyond the injection site.
Skin reactions alone should not be a reason for people to skip their second COVID-19 vaccine shot, especially since reactions are so rare after the second shot,” according to the study’s lead author.
July 4th Vaccination Goal Will Not be Met
CNN reports that “the White House acknowledged the US would fall short of President Joe Biden’s July Fourth Covid-19 vaccination goals.”
The stated goal was to have 70% of adults with at least one shot and 160 million Americans fully immunized by the holiday. Progress has been slowed by lower vaccination rates among young adults.
“The reality is many younger Americans felt like Covid-19 is not something that impacts them and they’ve been less eager to get the shot. However, with the Delta variant now spreading across the country and infecting younger people worldwide, it’s more important than ever that they get vaccinated,” said a White House spokesman.
Dr. Anthony Fauci has identified the Delta variant as “the greatest threat to the United States’ effort to eradicate COVID-19 in its borders.”
Young Americans and Blacks now Hit Hardest by COVID-19
CNN reports that “the groups most at risk are increasingly younger people and Black Americans.”
“Black people have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, accounting for about 12.5% of the population but more than 15% of total deaths, according to data from the CDC. In May, that percentage went up to 19%.
Recently, the average age of people dying from the virus also shifted younger. Adults under the age of 40 represented about 3% of Covid-19 deaths in May, more than double their share of total deaths since the pandemic began.”
COVID Booster Shots Not Needed Yet
CNN reports that a CDC groups says “that currently there isn’t enough data to support recommending Covid-19 booster shots to the general population.”
“The working group recommended that the CDC consider booster shots only ‘after evidence of declining protection,’ meaning if the vaccines became less effective over time or antibodies guarding against Covid waned over time. The agency could also consider using booster shots if a variant emerged that substantially reduced the effectiveness of the vaccine.
In the future, “more-vulnerable groups, such as elderly people or transplant recipients, may need an extra dose.”
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.