COVID-19: BH starts vaccinating children between 5 and 11 years old – Gerais

Rodrigo Martins celebrated, with a poster, the fact of having been vaccinated against COVID-19
Rodrigo Martins celebrated, with a poster, the fact of having been vaccinated against COVID-19 (photo: Juarez Rodrigues/EM/DA Press)

Belo Horizonte started this Saturday (01/15) vaccination against COVID-19 among children aged between five and 11 years old. At first, due to the number of doses currently available (10,800), children with comorbidities or permanent disabilities, indigenous, quilombola, bedridden or with reduced mobility will be included.

On this Saturday, the first day of immunization, vaccination was carried out exclusively in Health Centers, from 8 am to 2 pm. This morning, the Estado de Minas reporter was at the Marco Antnio de Menezes Health Center, in the Sagrada Famlia neighborhood, in the eastern region of the city of Belo Horizonte.

The movement was smooth, and the center even relocated the area of ​​application of doses to meet the new public. Eight-year-old Yago Arajo was not so firm in saying that the injection did not hurt.

“It didn’t hurt, I was anxious”, he said, before rectifying and saying that the vaccine “hurt a little”.

Yago Ara
Yago Arajo with his mother, Pmela, after the child’s vaccination (photo: Juarez Rodrigues/EM/DA Press)

The mother, Pmela Arajo, 24, said the vaccination was quick and praised the care team. “It was good, very fast. We arrived, I presented the documents and then he was vaccinated. Then he waits about 20 minutes to see if he has an immediate reaction, and that’s it”.

Another fearless one was Rodrigo Martins, ten years old. The child left the health center with a poster extolling the vaccine and the Unified Health System (SUS) and said that the application did not hurt.

“I didn’t feel anything, and I already want to go back soon to take more,” he said. The second dose of this group is scheduled for March 23 of this year.

The mother, Andressa Pereira, 30, also stated that she did not hesitate to take her son to be vaccinated. “I was very anxious, we believe in the vaccine, I already had two and I have a booster to take, so I am happy. And here it was very good, they played with Rodrigo, it was great”.

Lara Salustiano, aged six, was more shy and complained. “It hurt,” she said, when asked how she felt about getting the vaccine.

The mother, Fernanda Monteiro, 37, considers herself a little more relieved and now feels safe for Lara to return to face-to-face classes. “It was very good, the team was great, we feel less tense now. Now, I’m going to buy school supplies for her to come back in person”, he said.

Gabriela Meireles with her father, Gabriel, eam
Gabriela Meireles with her father, Gabriel, and mother, Daniela (photo: Juarez Rodrigues/EM/DA Press)

Another child who left with a poster in hand and was proud was Gabriela Meireles, seven years old. She says she didn’t want to leave the house today, but it’s okay if she went to get vaccinated. “More or less,” she replied, when asked if the vaccine hurt.

The mother, Daniela Lisboa, 39, also had high expectations and, according to her, had a perfect experience. “It was perfect here, the staff took care of us very well, the environment was characterized, really fun, and the children loved it, they were able to draw. It was good good”.

Vaccination against COVID-19 among children aged between five and 11 years old in BH took place only almost a month after the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) authorized the immunization of these age groups. The application of doses to children of these ages was criticized by Jair Bolsonaro (PL), president of the Republic, and his supporters who, without concrete evidence, questioned how safe it was to vaccinate children against the coronavirus.

Paulo Roberto Lopes Corra, director of Health and Epidemiological Safety Programming at the Municipality of BH, assured that the vaccines are safe. He also explained that the 20-minute waiting period at the centers after vaccination is a recommendation, so that children have a good start to post-immunization.

“We want to reassure parents and children that we are using safe, approved, and scientifically proven immunizations. It is an important moment for the city, and it is essential that people continue to take the necessary care, such as seeking vaccination and wearing protective masks. The waiting time is not mandatory, and more to follow up on how the children receive the vaccine, counting in this case with the help of those responsible”, he said, to the State of Mines.

The expectation that the 10,800 doses still remain for Monday (17) and Tuesday (18). On these days, in addition to the assistance that has already taken place this Saturday, there will be a focus on the application of the vaccine to bedridden children. Only later, with the availability of more doses, can immunization be planned according to age in this age group.

Minas Gerais received, this Friday morning (14), from the Ministry of Health, the first shipment of the Pfizer/Comirnaty childhood vaccine, with 110,000 doses – Minas has 1.8 million children in this range, according to data from the Fundação Joo Pinheiro (FJP). Distribution took place during the afternoon, and some cities started immunization on the same day they received the doses.

Belo Horizonte, capital of Minas Gerais, changed its modus operandi to vaccinate children this Saturday. This is because it was customary for the municipality of Belo Horizonte to take two days after receiving the doses to start immunization, which now took less than 18 hours.

It is necessary to present documentation, such as proof of address and vaccination booklet, to vaccinate the child (photo: Juarez Rodrigues/EM/DA Press)

According to the Municipality of BH, “this period is necessary for the conference and distribution of doses to the vaccination sites”. BH has 193,000 children aged between 5 and 11 years.

When summoned, they must appear at the appropriate health posts accompanied by a responsible person. It is necessary to present a vaccination card and identification document.

According to data released this Friday by the city hall of the capital of Minas Gerais, BH has 2,149,128 vaccinated with the first dose (87.7% of the total population of the city), 1,987,505 with the second (81.2%) and 562,036 with booster or additional doses (22.3%).

BH has had 7,130 deaths from COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic, in March 2020, 304,071 infections and 289,328 recoveries – 7,613 are still being monitored.

About Abhishek Pratap

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