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, transmission of COVID antibodies through breastmilk, Gen-Z’s hesitance to get vaccinated, and more.
Pause in Giving J & J Vaccine
The CDC and FDA have recommended that administration of the J & J vaccine be suspended while they investigate isolated reports of blood clots in vaccine recipients. PPP had a successful COVID vaccine clinic on Saturday, immunizing over 160 patients, parents and others 18 and older. We will resume providing the J & J vaccine when directed by the CDC and FDA. Please look for updates via text, e-mail, Facebook and the practice website.
Pfizer Requests Approval for Vaccine in 12–15-Year-olds
Pfizer recently requested to expand use of its COVID-19 vaccine to adolescents ages 12 to 15.
The request asks the Food and Drug Administration to amend the emergency use authorization, which the FDA originally granted late last year for people ages 16 and up.
The FDA’s review process will probably take several weeks, provided the data look good and are consistent with what was seen in adults.
Once vaccine is approved for this age group PPP will schedule COVID Clinics and inform parents through texts, e-mails and the practice website.
Vaccinated Mothers Pass Antibodies to Babies During Nursing
A recent study, as reported by the Harvard Gazette, found that the new mRNA COVID-19 vaccines were highly effective in producing antibodies against the COVID virus in pregnant and lactating women. The study also demonstrated the vaccines confer protective immunity to newborns through breast milk and the placenta.
The study “also compared vaccination-induced antibody levels to those induced by natural infection with COVID-19 in pregnancy, and found significantly higher levels of antibodies from vaccination.”
Very Mild Flu Season
“Data from the CDC shows just 1,893 Americans have tested positive for the influenza virus this year, between clinical laboratory results and public health labs. By this point last year, more than 290,000 people had tested positive for influenza.”
“Fewer than 1 in 1,000 hospitalizations this year have been for influenza, one-seventh the proportion recorded in the last low-severity flu season in 2011-2012.
Influenza is less transmissible than the virus that causes COVID-19, meaning masks and social distancing likely has an even greater impact on the overall number of flu cases than on the coronavirus. School shutdowns meant curbing one of the most prolific vectors of person-to-person transmission.”
80% of Teachers Vaccinated
The Hill reports that “Almost 80 percent of teachers, school staff and childcare workers had received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by the end of March.”
“Our push to ensure that teachers, school staff, and childcare workers were vaccinated during March has paid off and paved the way for safer in-person learning,” said CDC Director Rochelle Walensky.
Increase of COVID Cases with Youth Sports
The U.S. is seeing increasing reports of COVID-19 cases linked to youth sports, CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said recently.
Walensky emphasized that COVID-19 cases associated with youth sports do not necessarily relate to an increased risk of transmission in classrooms.
“As cases increase in the community, we expect the cases identified in schools will also increase. This is not necessarily indicative of school-based transmission,” Walensky said.
“We have not yet seen evidence of significant transmission of COVID-19 within schools when schools have fully implemented CDC’s mitigation guidance,” she said.
Remind your children who participate in sports to continue hand washing, mask wearing and social distancing whenever possible. Consider limiting or avoiding their participation in games and tournaments where these practices are not followed.
Why do Kids Fare Better with COVID than Adults?
USA Today reports that “a new study provides evidence that children may evade severe disease because a natural part of their immune response stops the virus early in its tracks.”
“What our data would suggest overall is that when children see the virus they have a very robust innate immune response and our belief is that it seems to be protective (and) stop the virus at first encounter,” said a study author.
COVID Shot Earlier in Pregnancy Better for Baby
HealthDay reports on a small study showing that “the sooner a pregnant woman gets a COVID-19 vaccine, the more likely she is to transfer protective antibodies to her baby.”
“We strongly recommend you get the vaccine while pregnant. But if you’re fearing vaccination might harm the baby, these data tell us quite the opposite. The vaccine is a mechanism to protect your baby, and the sooner you get it, the better,” said the study’s author.
Low Risk of Getting COVID from Contaminated Surfaces
“The risk of getting a COVID-19 infection from contaminated surfaces is extremely low, according to updated guidance published Monday by the CDC.”
“It is possible for people to be infected through contact with contaminated surfaces or objects (fomites), but the risk is generally considered to be low,” the agency said.
ABO Blood Group Does Not Predict Severity of COVID-19
A recent large, prospective case-control study that included more than 11,000 individuals who were newly infected with the COVID virus found no ABO associations with either disease susceptibility or severity.
Earlier in the pandemic there were reports that blood group A was associated with more severe infections and that group O offered some protection. These were small, retrospective studies (looking for past history of infection and complications) in contrast to this large prospective (identifying patients and non-infected controls at the onset of the illness) study.
Vaccine Hesitancy Among Generation Z
Stat reports that “a recent STAT-Harris Poll finds that 21% of Generation Z — defined in the survey as young adults aged 18 to 24 — said they would not get vaccinated against COVID-19 and another 34% said they would “wait awhile and see” before getting vaccinated. The results come on the heels of an NBC-Morning Consult poll that found that 26% of Gen Z said they would not get the vaccine.”
“There’s almost no messaging specifically tailored to them from federal or state public health officials. There’s hardly anything official on TikTok. And even the limited efforts to reach them where they are — like Instagram’s links to its “COVID-19 information center”— aren’t working.
Numerous public health officials told STAT that the issue of growing vaccine reluctance among young people can be solved with a coordinated campaign of reliable, useful information that makes it both easy and enticing for young people to get vaccinated, even if they may not personally benefit much.”
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
For reliable, up-to-date information about COVID-19, visit:
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.