NYC health official says kids under 18 not yet in line for vaccine




  • In Business
  • 2020-12-05 00:04:00Z
  • By NY Daily News

NEW YORK - Children under the age of 18 won't receive COVID-19 vaccinations in New York City because there has not been enough testing in that age range, the city's Health Commissioner revealed Friday.

Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi testified to the City Council that neither of the two vaccines expected to arrive in the Big Apple later this month has been "sufficiently tested in children as yet."

Children between the ages of 12 and 18 have enrolled in trials for both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, Chokshi said, adding that the city hasn't yet seen data from either.

"We will certainly be following that closely," he said. "It's premature to talk about anything like a vaccination requirement until we have that safe and effective vaccine."

Faith Walters, a rep from Pfizer's medical affairs team, noted that pregnant women also were not tested for that company's vaccine, suggesting it would not be immediately available to them as well.

"That is another place where we are working closely with the FDA to look at a potential pathway on pregnancy," she said.

Some adults will be able to get vaccinated soon, though, starting with the Pfizer vaccine, which is expected to be available in the city on Dec. 15. The Moderna vaccine is expected to become available the following week.

But vaccines are not expected to occur on a widespread basis until the middle of 2021, according to Chokshi.

Health care workers, nursing home residents and staffers, as well as essential workers and people at risk with preexisting conditions like diabetes and heart diseases, will be first in line, but the details of exactly who will get preference and when are still being hammered out by state and federal health officials.

The first phase of distribution will be divided into three subgroups. Who will be included in each group is still being discussed, Chokshi said. He noted that people living in prison, jails and homeless shelters would be included in the first phase of distributing the vaccine.

Councilwoman Carlina Rivera, chairwoman of the Council's Hospitals Committee, expressed concerns that undocumented immigrants could be discouraged from getting vaccinations due to preconditions on vaccine distribution that would require those vaccinated to provide personal information to the federal government.

"Those are things we are reviewing right now," Chokshi said, adding that the city would seek to protect people's identities and confidentiality.

Other Council members also raised concerns about public trust of the vaccines among Black and brown New Yorkers, given historical racial injustices and inequity in the medical field. Along with those, Councilman Mark Levine, head of the Council's Health Committee, wanted to know how efforts by computer hackers to infiltrate vaccine distribution networks might impact public trust.

"How confident are you in the security of our system?" Levine asked.

The Health Department has not heard of any cyberattacks on the city's public health infrastructure, Chokshi said.

"It is something we've been monitoring," he replied. "We have some dedicated cyber security efforts at the Health Department, including taking a hard look at the citywide immunization registry … in general, it is a very robust system."

---

©2020 New York Daily News

Visit New York Daily News at www.nydailynews.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

COMMENTS

More Related News

European countries struggle to make most of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses
European countries struggle to make most of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses
  • US
  • 2021-01-19 12:49:54Z

Some European countries are drawing fewer than the approved six doses from Pfizer and BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine vials, meaning shots are likely going to...

Pentagon Nixed Request to Give COVID Vaccine to National Guard Before Inauguration
Pentagon Nixed Request to Give COVID Vaccine to National Guard Before Inauguration

Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via GettySenior Pentagon officials denied an early December request to vaccinate the National Guard troops tapped to secure ...

Rev. Sharpton, Rev. Butts, U.S. Senator-Elect Rev. Warnock and over 100 Leading Black Clergy Convene on MLK Day to Confront COVID-19 in the Black Community
Rev. Sharpton, Rev. Butts, U.S. Senator-Elect Rev. Warnock and over 100 Leading Black Clergy Convene on MLK Day to Confront COVID-19 in the Black Community

Warnock and over 100 Leading Black Clergy Convene on MLK Day to Confront COVID-19 in the Black CommunityPR NewswireNEW YORK, Jan. 18, 2021Leading public...

Duterte says Filipinos can use Pfizer vaccine, but touts Sinovac deal
Duterte says Filipinos can use Pfizer vaccine, but touts Sinovac deal
  • US
  • 2021-01-18 17:55:29Z

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said on Monday he would not stop Filipinos from getting shots of the COVID-19 vaccine made by Pfizer and BioNTech...

Israel sharing COVID-19 data with Pfizer to help fine-tune vaccine rollout
Israel sharing COVID-19 data with Pfizer to help fine-tune vaccine rollout
  • US
  • 2021-01-18 16:42:48Z

Israel is giving weekly data updates on its COVID-19 outbreak to vaccine maker Pfizer under a collaboration agreement that may help other countries fine-tune...

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Business