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My research includes moral and legal aspects and the political implications of childhood vaccination. The impact of COVID-19 on children has influenced this research. And these effects appear to be changing, making the need for widespread use of the COVID-19 vaccine among children even more urgent.

At the beginning of the pandemic, there is data children have generally avoided severe COVID-19 infections. That rosy picture is now fading. New research shows children’s susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, has increased in “frequency and severity” during the pandemic.

One recently published study of British Columbia’s lower mainland chronicles the story a sharp increase in the number of infections among people under the age of 19. This surge in childhood infection with the omicron variant is consistent assessments in other parts of Canada and beyond.

The increase in the frequency of infections among children is bound to give way to a more cases with severe outcomesincluding hospitalization and death. There are children with concomitant diseases are particularly vulnerable to severe consequences of COVID-19.

Like adults, children can also suffer from long-lasting COVID, which can will damage their lungs, their brains and create many others health problems.

Low vaccination rates among minors

A a multifaceted approach limit transmission including camouflage, is recommended in lieu of any preventative measure. This is probably even more important with new options on the horizon.

Nevertheless, vaccination remains one of the the best means of protection against severe consequences when breakthrough infection is happening. Additionally, vaccination is carried out may reduce the likelihood long covid. The Vaccination is recommended by the Ontario government for persons under 18 years of age.

That is why it is alarming that the vaccination among minors of the primary series of two doses, especially for children under the age of 12, remains low.

Compared to the provincial average is 90% for those 12 and olderonly 41% of Ontario children between the ages of 5 and 11 have completed elementary school. The vaccine is almost non-existent among children under the age of five, with only six per cent receiving their first doses in the two months since Health Canada approved the COVID-19 vaccine for this cohort. The numbers are roughly the same across the country.

Specifically, Ontario declined to add COVID-19 to the list of “prescribed diseases” he has Law on Immunization of Schoolchildren last fall, despite support for the move by some school boards and both opposition liberals and the People’s Democratic Party.

It is time to reconsider this decision.

Adding COVID-19 to the act would not make vaccination against COVID-19 mandatory for school enrollment. Should childhood vaccines be mandatory this is a separate discussion. However, it could help solve the problem of spreading the COVID-19 vaccine among school-aged children in the province.

Vaccine requirements for school entry

Ontario, New Brunswick and British Columbia are the only Canadian jurisdictions that require vaccination for school entry. But none of those provinces require minors to be vaccinated to attend day care, elementary or high school.

The British Columbia regulation clearly provides for the duty of a reporting only one. Ontario’s requirements are slightly different because of parental responsibility “force the student to complete the prescribed immunization program.” But the duty does not apply to cases where the father “filed a statement of conscience or religious belief.”

This means that parents can opt out of having their child vaccinated against any or all of the diseases listed by signing and notarizing a government-issued form confirming “sincere belief”.

This practically makes reporting mandatory in Ontario as well. This is the situation in New Brunswick practically the same.

The difference between Ontario and New Brunswick is that Ontario requires parents seeking the bona fide exemption to also attend an “educational session.” For some, access to this educational session is a real benefit of listing COVID-19 as a disease.

Vaccine indecision and COVID-19

Indecision about the vaccine is thought to be a reason for the low rate vaccine absorption when it comes to COVID-19. But it is difficult.

While a small percentage of parents refuse all vaccines, many more is selective about vaccines and tend to be more cautious about the new than the old. In fact, parents’ generally positive attitudes toward routine childhood vaccines are a poor predictor of their attitudes toward COVID-19 vaccines, as in Canada and in other places.

When it came into effect in Ontario in 2017, requiring an education session for those seeking the bona fide exemption did little to change attitudes because vaccine fight against the mentioned diseases, while less than optimalwas still high overall.

And educational sessions can be like sermons for that stubborn minority whose minds have made up their minds on the subject. Compulsory education can also be counterproductive and make people more firm in their opinions.

However, there is a very large gap between low rates of childhood vaccination against COVID-19 and high rates of routine childhood vaccines.

Not anti-vaxxers

This suggests that the majority of parents who have so far refused to get vaccinated against COVID-19 are not staunch anti-vaxxers. This may encourage more parents to vaccinate their children.

Research on parents’ attitudes toward vaccination against COVID-19 is rapidly evolving, and there are understandably large gaps. But the general conclusion is that vaccination campaigns targeting specific demographic groups can increase coverage.

It is not yet clear whether adding COVID-19 to the list of “specified diseases” will have the desired effect in Ontario or elsewhere in Canada. And certainly the design and content of training sessions matter.

But it defies logic to already have a regulatory framework dedicated to increasing “child health protection” and to decide that a pandemic is not the right time to use it.

Australians are being urged to get a COVID-19 booster before spring


This article is reprinted from Conversation under a Creative Commons license. To read original article.Conversation

Citation: Adding COVID-19 to ‘specified diseases’ could increase vaccine uptake among children (October 3, 2022) Retrieved October 3, 2022, from boost-vaccine .html

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