Starting to deploy COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 5-11: What do experts recommend?


Assoc. Dr. Duong Thi Hong, Deputy Director of the Central Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, said that the first batch of Moderna vaccine supported by the Australian Government has arrived in Vietnam. Currently, this batch of vaccines is under quality control and is expected to be shipped today (April 13).

Right tomorrow (April 14), Quang Ninh will deploy this vaccine for the first time for children from 5 to under 11 years old and next week, the health sector will launch this vaccination campaign for children 5 – 11 years old on a national scale. The implementation of injections will be conducted first for students in grade 6, then gradually lower the age. Localities deploy brochures according to schools and locations based on the epidemic situation and the number of vaccines provided.

Start deploying COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 5-11 years old.

GS. Dr. Phan Trong Lan, Director of the Department of Preventive Medicine, said that the country has an estimated 11.8 children aged between 5 and under 12 years old, of which about 8.2 million children have not yet contracted COVID-19. -19. Therefore, the health sector will deploy 2 injections for this group of children first, trying to complete it in the second quarter of 2022.

About 3.6 million children already infected with COVID-19 will receive the injection in July, August, which is about 3 months after the child has COVID-19.

According to Assoc. Dr. Duong Thi Hong, the common post-vaccination reactions in children aged 5-11 years old are the same as those in the age group 12-17, which are headache, diarrhea, fatigue, fever, chills… This reaction occurs more often at the second dose than the first dose, accounting for more than 10% – 50%. The reaction rate is less than 10%, usually nausea, swelling at the injection site.

Rare cases with a rate of 1/10,000 or 1/10,000… are myocarditis, pericarditis, and anaphylactic reactions.

Assoc. lower than the group of 12-18 years old.

However, the health sector still instructs vaccination staff not to rely on this rate, but to always be vigilant during the injection process, and to monitor after injection to avoid risks.

The COVID-19 vaccine is contraindicated in children 5 to under 12 years of age if they are allergic to any of the ingredients in the vaccine or have a reaction to the first shot.

Preventive medicine experts recommend that parents and caregivers, before taking their children for vaccinations, to monitor their health in the previous days, if the child has abnormal symptoms or has a respiratory infection. Please take care of the child until the child is healthy before taking the child for vaccination.

In particular, if a child is suspected of having COVID-19, they should not be vaccinated against COVID-19. Parents also need to share information about the child’s history with medical staff such as allergies, chronic medical conditions… for specific instructions, to ensure the safety of immunization for children.

Doctor Le Kien Ngai, Head of Infection Control Department, National Children’s Hospital noted, after injection, children need to be monitored at the injection site for 30 minutes, then monitored 24/7 for 3 days. Because the child will be vaccinated at the same time, it will be convenient for both the family and the school to monitor the child.

“Changes after injection will be recognized in children such as fever, skin color change, rash… Especially, in the first 3 days after injection, children need to avoid vigorous exercise, therefore, subjects need physical strength such as gymnastics … should be limited, in order to avoid confusion or omission of post-injection symptoms”, emphasized Dr. Le Kien Ngai.

GS. Dr. Phan Trong Lan said that currently, 53 countries have been and are preparing to give a COVID-19 vaccine to young people in this age group. In the Western Pacific region alone, 20 countries have vaccinated children from 5 to under 12 years of age with this vaccine.

In Vietnam, there are two types of COVID-19 vaccines that will be administered to children from 5 to under 12 years old: the Pfizer vaccine and the Moderna vaccine. The interval between 2 injections is 4 weeks. The Ministry of Health requires only 2 injections of the same vaccine, not mixed with any mRNA vaccine.

For the dose for children in this age group, the Pfizer vaccine has a dose of 0.25ml, injected intramuscularly; Moderna vaccine is injected with 1/2 of the basic adult dose (equivalent to 0.25ml), the same as the booster dose for adults, intramuscularly.

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