The Valencian Society of Pediatricians has called for the vaccination of five to 12-year-olds to be brought forward as cases among this age group surge. The accumulated incidence rate is now highest among this group, at 275 per 100,000 of population.
Following the approval last week of the Pfizer pediatric coronavirus vaccine to be used for under 12s by the EMA (European Medicines Agency), child specialists in Valencia want the government to roll out the vaccination programme as quickly as possible and have even suggested giving the jabs in schools or in special vacunodromos (mass vaccination centres).
In an interview with Cadena Ser radio yesterday, the society’s president, Eva Suárez, said: “I think we must push for children to return to normality, to avoid them having to be confined, some of them repeatedly.”
She said it remained to be seen if the vaccination would be for all children or starting with those who are at risk “because of course in pediatrics we also have children who are at risk.”
She continued: “We would also like the [health] ministry to count on us and let us know in advance how they’re going to organise it because children between five and 11 form a large part of the population, and for us, in pediatrics, this is the worst time of year. It’s when we have the highest number of respiratory illnesses and our surgeries are already crowded.”
“Last year our winter was a bit lighter because with facemasks and other preventative measures we saw far fewer cases of respiratory illnesses but this year we’ve returned to pre-pandemic levels and we’re completely overcrowded.”